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''My Reign Of Wisdom...Your Roots!''

BLACK CIVILISATION.














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Africa:

Birthplace of Humanity

African Origins of Early Humanity

by Dr. Leonard Jeffries

One of the oldest fossil finds of early man was made in Africa in 1960 by archaeologist L. S. B. Leakey. He named his find Zinjanthropus, meaning Eastern Man. It was found in Olduvai Gorge in northern Tanzania which is an archaeologists paradise. Many ancient fossils and stone tools have been found there over the years. There are five distinct layers of strata of the earth visible in the cliffs. The oldest was formed more than two million years ago. One day while climbing up the slopes Mrs. Leakey discovered two teeth embedded in the rock side of the gorge. After nineteen days of digging the Leakeys uncovered an almost complete skull and stone tools.

The radiocarbon 14 method of determining the age of the fossil finds only allows the scientist to test an object that does not go back more than 50,000 years. Because Zinjanthropus was much older than 50,000 years another newer method to determine the age of a fossil find was used. This method was called Potassium Argon and allows the scientist to test as an object that goes back 2,000,000 years. Scientists at the University of California tested Zinjanthropus and believe that this early man was 1,750,000 years old.

Over the past twenty-five years various early fossil finds have been made in Africa and have been scientifically dated to be millions of years old. One of the finds recently discovered and found to be several millions of years old named "Lucy" and is the subject of a best-selling book. These discoveries and others have firmly established Africa as the cradle of humanity.

The African continent is a treasure trove of ancient history. From the sands and rock outcroppings of the Sahara desert in the north to the caves of South Africa, from the Nile River Valley to the Congo River and lakes of Central Africa, from the highlands of the Ethiopian plateau to the depths of the Olduvai Gorge in East Africa, the continent is continuously yielding from its soil the scientific and archaeological evidence of the evolving and unfolding drama of human history. This historical evidence is found in the bits of bone and fossil remains of Humanity's ancient African ancestors.

It can also be seen in various kinds of stone tools uncovered from the African soil, made by the world's oldest tool makers. It is clearly recorded in the rock and cave paintings and shattered pottery pieces, scattered all over the continent, by the world's first artists who captured early human conduct.

This unfolding saga of the human experience in Africa reveals and points to a series of startling discoveries in Olduvai Gorge in Tanganyika and Kenya that scientifically supports the belief that early humanity originated in East Africa millions of years ago and then spread with his tools and early culture to Asia and Europe. In the Congo River Basin and Great Lakes of Central Africa archaeologists unearthed the remains of the Ishongo people who lived some 8,000 years ago and used a counting system inscribed on bone, the earliest record in the world of mathematical notation.

Fortunately, this new understanding of Africa's place in history has been supported by the latest scientific discoveries to that scholars and researchers are able to systematically destroy the persistently held view of Africa as the Dark Continent and Africans as savages who contributed nothing to human development.

 

Black Civilisations In the world cycle. Black History - 320 C.E. - 15,000,000 - 1,000,000 B.C.E:

 

15,000,000 - 1,000,000 B.C.E
Homo Sapien estimated origin

10,000 B.C.E.
Earliest records of African people living in highly organized society Nubia religious (spiritual orientation)
Africa is not only the original home of humanity, it is the cradle of its intellect. It was on Africa's savannahs, riverbanks, highlands, deserts, and forests that the first men and women used the power of their minds to shape their environment in ways that suited them. Here man established himself as a tool maker and hunter and advanced social animal. Over the course of millions of years, groups of prehistoric Africans of the genus Homo reasoned, judged, understood, and created the basis for much of the technology and industry that exists in the world today.

10,000 - 5,000 B.C.E.
Ethiopian (Kush) Impire
Glacial thaw in Europe estimated completion

6,000 - 5,000 B.C.E.
The Kushite Civilization

5,000 - 4,000 B.C.E.
The Ta Seti civilization
Nubia and the Pharoah system of governement. The first invasions of foreigners into Kemet (Ancient Egypt)

4,240 - 3,100 B.C.E.
The founding of KMT (Kemet/ ancient Egypt) 1st - 14th Dynasties
Narmer Menes is responsible for the unification of Kemet during the 1st dynasty. The building of the Great pyramids during the 4th dynasty. The development of the sciences and liberal arts. During this period Imhotep the world first known genius lived.

2,000 B.C.E.
Hyksos (Asians) invaded KMT 15th - 17th Dynasties

1,500 B.C.E.
Africans retook control of KMT 18th - 26th Dynasties

525 B.C.E.
Persians invaded KMT along with Alexander the great who raided the libraries and take African knowledge to Europe 27th - 31st Dynasties

323 B.C.E.
Queen Candace. Greeks invaded KMT 32nd Dynasty Herodetus (father of European history), Sacrotes, Aristotle and others studied in Africa. They all took African higher level of knowledge back to Europe.

45 B.C.E.
Romans invaded KMT 33rd Dynasty
The opening of of the university of Timbuctu.

320 C.E.
KMT reign as leading world high-culture ended. Mass migrations, the first massive influx of Arabs.

 

Rhythmic Patterns in African Personality:



African people throughout the world have a world view which is conceived as a universal oneness.
There is an interconnection of all things that compose the Universe. Pierre Erny1 (1973) has
observed that " The African cosmos is like a spider web: its least element cannot be touched without making the whole vibrate. Everything is connected, interdependent."' This interconnectedness is conceived as a kind of "vitalism" or life force which pervades all of nature: rocks, trees, lower animals, the heavens, the earth, the rivers, and particularly man, who is a vessel for this oneness which permeates and infuses all that is.

An African conception of personality must then begin with such an elemental notion of the person.
One cannot begin to speak of humans without first speaking of this force that defines our continuity with all things within the world. The Dogon people of Mali refer to this force as Nyama, which flows in our veins with our blood and connects all of our actions and all of our circumstances with the functioning of things in general. The Bambara (Mali and Ivory Coast) call it the dya which serves to unify all things in nature. The Akan of Ghana refer to it as a person's Okra - their life force; it is a small bit of the supreme force that lives in every person's body (it is by definition what gives one life and returns to the supreme force when one dies). In the United States, this notion of a universal force is most closely rendered by the American Blacks' notion of "soul." Despite the small variations in the conceptualization of this force, such a notion serves as the basic substratum for beginning to understand the African person.

Relationships between men and within men are regulated by notions of flow. Flow is rhythm and
rhythm becomes a useful way of conceptualizing African people's rendering of the notion of
personality. Definitions of personality in the West emphasize the uniqueness and the insularity of the individual. Because of the vitalism and rhythm that constitute the genetic structure and dynamics of life, it is essentially nonsensical to speak of a separate and isolated entity called the "self." When viewing African people one must understand the self from what Wade Nobles2 (1974) has described as the ontogenetic concept of self (i.e., "self as an interdependent entity shared with all members of the tribe.") Rhythm then becomes a key concept in understanding the function of the person from the African perspective. The concept of vibration, movement, or flow unifies all people and all things. Therefore, the point of emphasis for an African Psychologist would be the relationship and the interconnection between people rather than focusing on the separateness, uniqueness or individuality of people.

THE PERSON

From the perspective of the individual, the life process is regulated by their submission to the rules of life. The person maintains their internal rhythm by the observance of certain basic ideas of self-respect and respect of others. Proper rituals and relationships that reinforce their connection with the "tribe" (community) renew the recognition of the universal life force that flows within and through the person as a whole. On a very concrete level this is reflected in the considerable social orientation of African people. The very idea of isolation or seclusion among African people is synonymous with madness. The coming together and sharing with each other in a harmonious manner reaffirms the rhythmic flow between self and others.

Dancing is highly symbolic and significant when viewed within this context. The rhythmic nature of
music that shatters the illusion of separateness and fuses the listeners into a shared state of being becomes an affirmation of unity among the people.

Throughout the world, social gatherings among Black people constitute a high priority value. Dance is a ritual that actively expresses the reunification of the dispersed forces of oneness. The old pejorative that stated that Blacks have "natural rhythm" and the mockery that has been made of Black Ritual dance is an indication of the misunderstanding of the true symbolic meaning and significance of rhythm and dance. It is particularly disturbing that dance which has such a high spiritual significance has been reduced to the level of raw carnal significance, which is the usual view of things by Western observers who rely upon the empirical as their criteria for understanding the world. (In other words, dance is viewed as a sublimation of either aggressive and/or sexual impulses from the perspective of the popular Western Freudian view).

With an appreciation for the unique perspective of the African person, one is less likely to attribute
inappropriate Western ideas and understanding onto a culturally distinct people. For example, when one understands this kind of cultural distinction and is able to appreciate the precedent of socializing over individual separateness, they would be less likely to offer isolation as a solution or treatment for people suffering from stress or personality disorder.

It is interesting to note that mental disorders among European-Americans is treated by an immediate isolation of the person from familiar people and contexts, whereas in African settings, the entire family is viewed as a participant in restoring health and order. There are interesting parallels of this notion of coming together as a curative force in all parts of the world there are people of color. During a time of illness, the traditional treatment of the person usually entailed the congregating of the "tribe's" herbalist, along with the religious leader, the elders, and the immediate members of the family. Often to the accompaniment of drumming (a universal metronome of rhythm) and chanting, the treatment was executed by group participation.
Such a congregation often continued until health had been restored. Forde3 (1970) observes in
describing the Dogon people:

Disorder...which for an individual results especially from the breaking of the rules of
life, prefigures the universal disorder which spreads by stages from the individual to his close kinsmen, his family, his clan, his people. But the disorder may be arrested
and removed at any stage by appropriate rituals.

Even in the United States where the African people are most alienated from their true nature, one finds vestiges of this same pattern. It is considered a real contribution on the part of family members, friends, and religious leaders to come and "sit up" with the sick person. The participation in the cure by visitation and communion is still an important social value among Africans in the United States. One needs to make only a brief visit to a local hospital and watch the swarms of Black family members and friends who come to surround the ailing victim.
This is in contrast with the emphasis on isolating, limiting visitors, and restricting visiting hours found in Western settings for treatment of the sick.

Education is another area where an understanding of rhythm and communion might correct many of the errors of educating Black youth that grow out of the imposition of alien concepts of personality onto Black students. With this idea of socializing and it's significance within the African view of the world, one would be less likely to replace people by machines in the teaching process. They would also understand the superior of am interactive format in educating Black people. One can better understand the alienation of a Black student from the classroom which forces dreaded isolation or dehumanization. The most common complaint about the Black student is the disruption caused by the excessive socializing which goes on in the classroom. From a perspective of rhythm, one is made aware of the unnaturalness of the classroom
setting that fosters isolation rather than the eminent value of socializing.

It is interesting to observe how the phenomenon of participation permeates Black group settings. The common pattern of call-and-response found in all settings from the fields to the church, from political rallies to religious observance; the rhythm of shared participation becomes the tie that binds the diversification of function. The leader in his authority makes a call; the listener shares in the call by responding and supporting the call of the initiator. The rollicking "Amens," "Right ons,"
That's right," which characterize the ongoing support of the audience soon obscure the distinction
between the speaker and listeners and, again, the motif of oneness is restored. The key idea of this part of the discussion is that it is meaningless to conceptualize an individual personality among African people. When such insular notions are used as the basis for intervening into the life processes of Black people, one condemns their efforts to failure from the outset because such notions are alien to the nature of African people.

KINSHIP PATTERNS

The concept of unity or rhythm also explains African kinship patterns. The tribe obtains its group
definition based upon its common genesis. A man without lineage is a man without citizenship,
without identity, and without allies. Nearly all tribes have a mythological system that defines their
derivation from one source. This becomes a critical notion for social organization and social control, as well as reinforcing the notions of rhythmic socializing described above. The often-described extended family among African people is relevant to this notion of oneness. Among the Dogon, for any individual, all uterine kin represent femininity and all paternal kin masculinity. "A man calls all women who are uterine kin, whatever their age, mother (na),- he calls all adult men of his patrilineal kin father (baj) "~ Such kinship patterns serve to reinforce the notion of interdependence which Is derived from the notion of a single unifying life force which flows through all people and all things.

Again, there are derivatives of this notion found in Black Americans' families and social patterns. The extensive number of "distant" relatives who are incorporated into the nuclear family often baffles cultural aliens. The inclusion of cousins removed by a factor of fourth or fifth into the immediate family fold is not unusual, particularly in rural settings of the United States. The use of "para-kinship" ties is described by Robert Staples5 (1974), where males and females who are "unrelated" to one another "go for" or have "play" brothers and sisters who have the same loyalties and responsibilities as "blood" relations. Such relationships even further extend the far-reaching kinship patterns. Particularly among Black Americans, the pattern of referring to each other as "brother" or "sister" serves to foster that notion of kinship among all people. Such kinship
ties and titles serve to reinforce the flow among all members of the group.

'With this perspective, the Black family is not subject to the considerable criticism it has received
from scholars who have chosen to view the Black family as an aberration of the model European
family which, like its cosmology, is much more closed and insulated. White social workers,
psychologists, and educators have found themselves utterly confused when they have attempted to list, define, or describe Black families utilizing the guidelines that have grown from their own
experiences. Such extended kinship patterns are as practical as they are spiritually and philosophically significant. Such patterns of kinship serve to establish an implicit social control and morality that make external coercion unnecessary in observing laws and respect for human relationships.

It is particularly interesting to note that as these indigenous kinship patterns begin to erode, there
has been a parallel increase in disharmonious relationships among Black groups. The extensive
documentation of Black-on-Black crime, especially in the cities, is the clearest example of the
consequences of the erosion of natural African patterns of family. Particularly in the cities, contact
with alien people and imitations of their patterns as well as the considerable stress of urban living have served to erode these natural kinship patterns. Disharmony has resulted from the disruption of flow and interconnectedness in these alien environments. The housing patterns the absence of
adequate opportunity to form firm kinship ties, the excessive crowding of urban living all serve to
erode these socially facilitative kinship patterns. One observes as a consequence a kind of perversion of these natural patterns. The brotherhood of one's age group mutates into delinquent gangs that must defend their territory as well as their identity in response to excessive congestion, as well as imitative of a modeled life-style communicated by the alien media.

The loss of spiritual definitions of kinship in lieu of the considerable material emphasis of the
environment further serves to erode these relationships. The few instances where such kinship
patterns have been re-instituted and utilized as a means of social cooperation and social control have been successful only in those contexts where there has been a reactivation of the concept of a unifying spiritual force. Certainly, the Nation of Islam serves as the most dramatic example of the facility of unity within a context of a shared vitalism. It is precisely because of the activation of this spiritual vitalism that such a spirit of fraternity persists within the Nation while it erodes rapidly in more superficial contexts, such as the attempt to use political identities as a sufficient cause for unity.

MALE- FEMALE RELATIONSHIPS

The perpetual alternation or vibration of opposites maintains the energy behind the unifying vitalism, which reflects a principle of twinness that ideally should direct the proliferation of life. "Nothing in the universe can be generated without the cooperation of complementary principles or 'twins' whose archetype is the feminine-masculine couple."6 The fundamental law of creation is the principle of twinship. Even at the level of the individual, humans are conceived as possessing
"two souls of opposite sexes, one of which inhabits his body while the other dwells in the sky or water and links it to them," according to the Dogon.7 "Man and woman are each provided with twin souls, one of each sex."8 The very cohesion of man with nature, man with himself and man with woman is regulated by the principle of 'twinness and the attraction of opposites. "Diverse elements are bound to each other by meaningful relationships. They make a closely woven fabric formed by threads of warp and woof."9

The distinction between male and female is the essence of their union. It is in this area that the most serious toll of the slavery experience was taken. The traditional distinction of the roles between the sexes was obscured by the manipulations of the slave master. The persistence of the basic slavery social order which has sustained tie Black man in a subservient and dependent role while fostering the domination of the woman has prohibited the return to more natural patterns of role definition. The absence of real masculine prerogatives for the Black man has left his role obscure, which has, in turn, obscured the role of his complement. In addition, identification with the uni-sexuality of the alien culture that surrounds us has further obscured the distinction between the sexes. The pejorative quality of sexism has made the contrast of femininity even more abhorrent to the Black woman. Consequently, the alternation of opposites that should be personified in male-female relations is disordered. The cohesion that is achieved by the attractive force of opposites is disjoined by the confusion of roles.

In traditional society, male and female roles are distinct. The separation and interdependence of the sexes is a basic theme of their social organization and ritual. In some societies there is also a marked segregation of the sexes with men and women taking their meals separately, dancing in separate groups. On festive occasions they do not mingle but enjoy themselves in separate groups. The primary necessity to have independence before interdependence among Black men and women has confounded those relationships in the United States from the outset. Most of the conflicts between the sexes emanate either from the economic and status pressures of living in a passionately materialistic culture or from the inevitable jealousies of the dependent and insecure.

Again, we find among the members of the Nation of Islam a return to the cohesive balance of opposites in the relationships between men and women. Without being relegated to an inferior status (on the contrary, the Muslim woman becomes the recipient of considerable exaltation), the woman is able to accept a submissive role to the man. The man must submit to real justice and learn to lead without exploitation as a consequence of the independence that has freed him from the shackles of dependent oppression. With an appreciation of the implicit opposition of forces within their roles, they are free to develop individually and collectively in a mutually supportive direction. It is remarkable that submission, which is a preeminent value among most Black people of the world, has attained such a negative connotation as a result of its association with slavery and its aftermaths. As a result of the support that the pairs of opposites give each other, there is an equilibrium that the individual being conserves within oneself. The individual is able to
stabilize the twin souls within through achievement of the external stabilization in the balanced male female relationship. In traditional societies, sexual mutilations are seen symbolically as producing within the person a definite dis-equilibrium, dispossessing them of one part of the self, and compelling them to seek outside in the human community and specially in marriage that which is lacking.

RELIGION

It is impossible to speak accurately of Black personality without speaking of Black religion.
Sterling Plump observes:

By Black religion I mean those ways in which Black people in Africa and later in America, conceptualized to explain the universe and man's relationship to it and to subsequently govern man's relationship to man.10

Religion became the rituals for regulating the rhythms of life, which flow from the force of oneness that permeates all things in the Black man's world. John Mbiti (1970) says:

traditional religions permeate all the departments of life there is no formal distinction between the sacred and the secular, between the religious and non-religious, between the spiritual and the material areas of life. Wherever the African is, there is his religion."

Certainly, the most consistent characteristic of Black people throughout the world is their fervent
belief and practice in some form of religion. Though the practice comes in many forms, it
consistently seeks to reaffirm the notion of oneness within and between people as well as with the
source of Divine force that flows through all people. Religion becomes the essential regulator for
the rhythms of life, which are subject to the distortions of material relativity. Religion is a primary vehicle for re-affirming through shared experience and contacts the communality that exists
between the people. It is the vehicle that unified all of the community into a kinship of oneness.

Even the avowed Black atheist finds himself caught up in a religious drama if he maintains any form of in-depth contact with Black people. "A person cannot detach themselves from the religion of their group, for to do so is to be severed from ones roots, their foundation, their context of security their kinships, and the entire group of those who make one aware of their own existence."12

Certainly, the history of Black people throughout the world and in all eras has always occurred within a religious context. From the building of the pyramids, throughout the rich kingdoms of the
African, King Solomon, all along the Nile, throughout the Asian world, and into North America, Black people and their offspring have all been involved in a religious drama.

If consistency, as documented by aeons of Black history, is a source of data about binding universal laws, then we should look to invariables in that history for definitions of Black normality. From such a perspective it would seem that the most normal life-style for a Black person is a religious life-style. What is meant by a religious life-style is one that takes account of the unifying strand between people and throughout nature. It should serve to unify people into a bond of oneness that confirms the self through participation with others. It should also regulate the rhythm of life and provide rituals that restore order when disorder occurs. Religion should be a vehicle for the management of interpersonal harmony and it should provide methods for management and mastery of the material universe.

The suggestion here is that the spiritual definition of self that characterized the African requires that a conceptualization of the personality of the African utilize a spiritual cosmology. The material
definition of self that dominates Western psychology from behaviorism to libido, is inappropriate and inaccurate as definitions of African people. The application of any of these theoretical structures to the mind of the Black person of necessity presents an incomplete and inaccurate view of this human being with universal dimensions. The psychology of the Black person can come from no less than a cosmology that takes account of the oneness of the African mind, the
rhythms of the African spirit, and the restoration of order where there is a disruption of rhythm. Though this may sound unduly abstract and impractical or too philosophical, it, in fact, corresponds with the existing realities of the African's world. A survey of the attitudes of the majority of African people anywhere in the world would reveal those attitudes to reflect a religious conceptualization of their lives and their world. If a function of the psychologist is to help describe normative reality, there is no behavior that is more normative than Black religion. It is in religion or through religion that we find the source of leadership, education, counseling, recreation, birth and death for African people. It would not be far-fetched to assert that Black psychology is Black religion.

"NEGRO" DISHARMONY

A contaminant has affected the traditionally rhythmic Black personality. This contaminant
emanated from contact and involvement with the arrhythmic Western personality. Nowhere is this
contamination more evident than in the personality of the "American Negro" This so-called "Negro" is an American creation having been spawned from the loins of an insidious slavery system. This slavery system is notorious as the most humanly degrading method of exploitation and abuse in the history of civilized people. Its notoriety primarily stemmed from its long-term effect on the personalities of its victims. Unlike other people of African descent around the globe, the former American slave was thoroughly emptied of their traditions and prohibited from participation in those societal-sustaining systems of shared cultural participation; a disharmony was inculcated into the slave personality.

All societies develop and maintain their integrity as a people of shared origins with shared needs on the basis of their shared cultural experiences and traditions. In being emptied of these traditions, the American Black has been left slightly out of harmony with themselves and other people of African descent. The sense of oneness and rhythm that predominates in the traditional African worldview has been almost thoroughly uprooted from the conscious personality of the "Negro." The "Negro" has become arrhythmic to the extent that they have denied the unconscious prompting of their genetically endowed mentality. They have succumbed to the sway of the alien mentality, which though consistent with the social, cultural and psychological needs of the slave master was and is destructive to the needs of the Black people.

African personality was traditionally viewed as extending into the life space of all life forms,
particularly, that of related creatures. That extended self has since narrowed itself into fleshly isolation under the ideology of individuality characteristic of Western mentality. Kinship patterns that radiated outward to encompass all of the identifiable tribe have crumbled under the pressure of exalting a nuclear family unit. Male/female relationships are fraught with disharmony as they frantically chase the elusive alien models of beauty and conjugal balance. Religion, which was the nucleus of traditional Black life, has become a superfluous moral annoyance. In light of this, one can only conclude that the "Negro" has become arrhythmic to the extent that they have alienated themselves from their traditional personality characteristics. To be restored to "Black" is to grow back into the traditional rhythmic modes of relating discussed above.

CONCLUSION

Rhythm is the pulse of the unitary vitalism that flows through and permeates the African's mind and world. It is manifested in everything from Black movements to Black speech, and, in more or less subtle forms, in all aspects of Black life. It is simultaneously the essence of the oneness of the
African wherever they are and the motivation for unification that characterizes the proverbial search of the African spirit. When disorder occurs, whether it is manifested physically, mentally, or spiritually, the disruption emanates from a disturbance in the rhythm, which is the African's gauge of oneness.

Order is restored when we attain a reestablishment of social equilibrium with our brothers and sisters. The kinship patterns of African people are geared toward maintenance of the same harmonious balance between the person and their nuclear group. The striving to extend that balance leads to indefinite extensions of the nuclear group itself. Male and female relationships acquire for the separate partners the same harmonious equilibrium to the extent that the polar, oppositional forces of maleness and femaleness are complementary in the actualization of the separate roles. Briefly, happiness in such relationships is directly proportional to the degree to which the man is fully man and the woman is un-ambivalently woman. Intra-personal and interpersonal harmony is mediated by religion that facilitates the unique qualities of rhythm and
unity that characterize the motivational striving of the African mind.

The essential point is that we must reach beyond the materialistic and physical definitions of mind that characterize 'Western psychology and we must seek to understand the African mind within the context of its distinct characteristics and strivings. The concept of a unifying force or vitalism that pervades all of nature and particularly finds its highest expression in people along with its manifestation through rhythms represents the departure of the African psychologist from the personality theorist coming from the perspective of Western psychology.

References

1. Erny, Pierre, Childhood and Cosmos: The Social Psychology of the Black African Child. Ncw
York: New Perspectives, 1973.
2. Nobles, W., Africanity and Black Families, Sausalito, Calif., Black Scholar, Vol. 5, No. 9. June,
1974.
3. Forde, Daryll, African Worlds, New York: Oxford Uni versity Press, 1970
4. Erny, Pierre, op. cit.
5. Staples, Robert, "Strength an Inspiration: Black Families in the United States," to appear in
American Minority Lifestyles, Robert Hahenstein and Charles Mindel (eds.) New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 1974.
6. Erny, Pierre, op. cit.
7. Forde, Daryll, op. cit.
8. Erny, Pierre, op. Cit.
9. IBID.
10. Plumpp, S., Black Rituals, Chicago: Third World Press, 1972.
11. Mbiti, J.S., African Religions and Philosophy, Garden City, New York: Doubleday and Company. 1970.
12. IBID.

 

The Black Egyptians--Original Settlers of Kemet:


The Black Egyptians are the original settlers of KMT. "The native Sudanese are one of the original pigmented Arabs in that region. They are members of the same ethnic family with the ancient Egyptians, the Ethiopians, the Southern Arabians, and the primitive inhabitants of Babylon. All founders and sustainers of the mighty Nilotic civilization we still admire today. They are very great nation of Blacks, who did rule almost over all Africa and Asia in a very remote era, in fact beyond the reach of history of any of our records.

Egypt is a Greek word meaning "Black."

The Egyptians of the Bible were Negroid.
The bible says both Egyptians and Ethiopians are descendants of Ham.
Arabs invaded Egypt in the 7th Century AD; therefore,
Arabs have no more connection to Ancient Egypt than Europeans have to Ancient America.
Black Egyptians were eventually mixed with invading Libyans, Persians, Greeks, Romans, Turks, Arabs and Western Europeans. That is where the mixed people of the modern-day Arabs come from.




The following is supporting evidence from The African Origin of Civilization: by: Cheikh Anta Diop



Evidence from Physical Anthropology
The skeletons and skulls of the Ancient Egyptians clearly reflect they were Negroid people with features very similar to those of modern Black Nubians and other people of the Upper Nile and of East Africa.


Melanin Dosage Test
Egyptologist Cheikh Anta Diop invented a method for determining the level of melanin in the skin of human beings. When conducted on Egyptian mummies in the Museum of Man in Paris, this test indicated these remains were of Black people.

Osteological Evidence
"Lepsius canon," which distinguishes the bodily proportions of various racial groups categories the "ideal Egyptian" as "short-armed and of Negroid or Negrito physical type."

Evidence From Blood Types
Diop notes that even after hundreds of years of inter-mixture with foreign invaders, the blood type of modern Egyptians is the "same group B as the populations of western Africa on the Atlantic seaboard and not the A2 Group characteristic of the white race prior to any crossbreeding."

The Egyptians as They Saw Themselves
"The Egyptians had only one term to designate themselves =kmt= the Negroes (literally). This is the strongest term existing in the Pharaonic tongue to indicate blackness; it is accordingly written with a hieroglyph representing a length of wood charred at the end and not crocodile scales," singular. ‘Kmt’ from the adjective =kmt= black; it therefore means strictly Negroes or at the very least black men. The term is a collective noun which thus described the whole people of Pharaonic Egypt as a black people."

Divine Epithets
Diop demonstrates that "black or Negro" is the divine epithet invariably used for the chief beneficent Gods of Egypt, while the evil spirits were depicted as red.

Evidence From the Bible
The Bible states that "…[t]he sons of Ham [were] Cush and Mizraim [i.e. Egypt], and Phut, and Canaan. And the sons of Cush; Seba, and Havilah, and Sabtah, and Raamah and Sabtechah." According to Biblical tradition, Ham, of course, was the father of the Black race. "Generally speaking all semitic tradition (Jewish and Arab) class ancient Egypt with the countries of the black."

Cultural unity of Egypt With The Rest of Africa
Through a study of circumcision and totemism. Diop gives detailed data showing cultural unity between Egypt and the rest of Africa.

Linguistic Unity With Southern and Western Africa
In a detailed study of languages, Diop clearly demonstrates that Ancient Egyptian, modern Coptic of Egypt and Walaf of West Africa are related, with the latter two having their origin in the former.

Testimony of Classical Greek and Roman Authors
Virtually all of the early Latin eyewitnesses described the Ancient Egyptians as Black skinned with wooly hair.
After the conquest of Egypt by Alexander, under the Ptolemies, crossbreeding between white Greeks and black Egyptians flourished. "Nowhere was Dionysus more favored, nowhere was he worshiped more adoringly and more elaborately than by the Ptolemies, who recognized his cult as an especially effective means of promoting the assimilation of the conquering Greeks and their fusion with the native Egyptians." {Endnote 15: J. J. Bachofen, Pages choisies par Adrien Turel, "Du Regne de la mere au patriarcat." Paris: F. Alcan, 1938, p. 89.}

These facts prove that if the Egyptian people had originally been white, it might well have remained so. If Herodotus found it still black after so much crossbreeding, it must have been basic black at the start.

Before examining the contradictions circulating in the modern era and resulting from attempts to prove at any price that the Egyptians were Whites, let us note the comments of Count Constantin de Volney (1757-1820). After being imbued with all the prejudices we have just mentioned with regard to the Negro, Volney had gone to Egypt between 1783 and 1785, he reported the Egyptian Race is the very race that had produced the Pharaohs: the Copts (p. 27).

"All have a bloated face, puffed up eyes, flat nose, and thick lips; in a word, the true face of the mulatto. I was tempted to attribute it to the climate, but when I visited the Sphinx; its appearance gave me the key to the riddle. On seeing that head, typically Negro in all its features, I remembered the remarkable passage where Herodotus says: "As for me, I judge the Colchians to be a colony of the Egyptians because, like them, they are black with woolly hair. ..." We can see how their blood, mixed for several centuries with that of the Romans and Greeks, must have lost the intensity of its original color, while retaining nonetheless the imprint of its original mold. We can even state as a general principle that the face is a kind of monument able, in many cases, to attest or shed light on historical evidence on the origins of peoples. {End quote}

When Egypt was invaded by Arabs - Egypt suffered turbulent times when, in 609 AD, the country had sided with Nicetas, a lieutenant of Heraclius, in the rebellion against the emperor Phocas. Only shortly after Heraclius overthrew Phocas, the Byzantines were attacked by the Persians. The armies of the Sasanid King Khosrau II invaded Egypt, inflicting cruel suffering upon its some of its inhabitants. This Persian occupation lasted six years.

African Antiquity



In the Beginning...


Narmer (Menes) The 1st Pharaoh of Egypt

(Fig 5 - Diop Cheikh Anta, The African Origin of Civilization, 1974)


King Aha-Mena-Narmer is known by millions of people by the Greek-distorted "version" of his name: King Menes. Notice the African features from his high chick bones, flat nose and thick lips. The Kufi/Crown upon his head is a sign of royal authority.

King Aha-Mena-Narmer is the founding King of the first Ancient Egyptian dynasty. He also become the first Emperor of Kemet by unifying Upper and Lower Egypt into one imperial federation, along the Nile Valley. From its Central-Eastern Kilimanjaro Mountains sources to the Mediterranean Sea Delta, the Ancient Egyptian Empire gave birth to the world's first civilization.

Since then, the imperial heritage has been carried on, from dynasty to dynasty and from generation to generation. Extensive territory is nothing new to African Kings and Emperors: it is simply a matter of historical, cultural and imperial continuity.

African history and culture trace their roots back to that pharaonic period, the ultimate source of African humanities. The same way the European/Western world traces its history and culture back to Greece and Rome. African human sciences, finally reconciled with its Ancient Egyptian sources, can retrace the entire history of the Nation, step-by-step.

On this immemorial timeline, the enslavement and colonial periods suffered by African people can be considered as little parenthesis. Yet, the terrible impact of colonial bound mis-education and cultural conditioning affects many people, Blacks and Whites alike. Consequently, innocent victims of "schooling" who have lost their historical memories, now find it hard to believe that, Black people actually played the earliest civilizing role in the world. That misleading education has damaged the minds, self-esteem and behavior of many people across racial lines:

"The History of humanity will remain confused as long as as we fail to distinguish between the two early cradles in which nature fashioned the instincts, temperament, habits and ethical concepts of the two subdivisions before they met each other after a long separation, dating back to prehistoric times..."Cheikh Anta Diop

Dr. Cheikh Anta Diop, in his "L’Antiquité Africaine Par L’Image" (Notes Africaines No Special 145) drew two important conclusions:


Humanity born at the latitude of the African Great Lakes, near the Ecuador is by necessity pigmented (black) and African. This is substantiated by Gloger’s Law which states that warm blooded beings are pigmented in hot and humid climates".

All races are issued from the African race by direct relationships and, the other continents were peopled from Africa at the Homo erectus stage, as well as the Homo sapiens stage, which appeared about 150,000 years ago.


It has been finally proven that, for a time period beginning 5 million years ago up until the glacial thaw (10,000 years ago), Africa almost unilaterally peopled and influenced the rest of the world.

Dr. Leakey, one of the world's most reputable paleo-anthropologist, in his serious work "Progress And Evolution Of Man In Africa", reminds us that: "The critics of Africa forget that men of science are today satisfied that, Africa was the birthplace of man himself". Human beings are Africa’s first contribution to humanity.

Advanced research and several studies in prehistory and paleo-anthropology have confirmed the similarities between the original founders of the pharaonic civilization (ancient Nubians, Ethiopians and Egyptians) and the modern day Africans.

Rawlinson concludes in "Origins Of Nations" that: "The authors of Genesis unites together as members of the same ethnic family the Egyptians, the Ethiopians, the Southern Arabians, and the primitive inhabitants of Babylon".

According to many ancient testimonies, the inhabitants of Sudan, Egypt, Arabia, Palestine, Western Asia and India were Ethiopians, therefore Africans. Back in that era, there were two lands called Ethiopia. Sir Godfrey Higgins (Anacalypsis, vol.1) declared: "One on the east of the Red Sea, and the other on the west of it; and a very great nation of Blacks, from India, did rule almost over all Asia in a very remote era, in fact beyond the reach of history of any of our records".

Herodotus who was initiated within the Ancient Egyptian mystery system declared that:" The uniform voice of primitive antiquity spoke of the Ethiopians as one single race, dwelling along the shores of the southern ocean, from India to the pillars of Hercules". (Herodotus, vol.1 book I)

Greece: An Average Student of Ancient Egypt

Dr. Theophile Obenga, in this magisterial book "African Philosophy in World History" (Obenga,1998), successfully challenges and neutralizes the Hegelian philosophy of history, continuing in the footsteps of Dr. Cheikh Anta Diop, his mentor. Hegel alienated the Caucasian mind by stating with ignorance that "Africa has no history". That mis-education of the Caucasians led to arrogance with an unfounded racial superiority belief system.

The seven liberal arts and sciences, which are grammar, rhetoric, logic, arithmetic, geometry, music and astronomy, come out of Africa. Therefore, to the Ancient Egyptians, and neither to the Greeks, nor to the Romans, are we indebted for the present body of human knowledge. Greece and Rome were average students in Ancient Egypt. Considered foreigners and childish, Greek students were unable to access a complete initiation and induction within the Ancient Egyptian Mystery System.

Aristotle of Stagira, Thales of Miletus, Pythagoras of Samos, Diodorus of Sicily, Plato and Strabo were all initiated in Ancient Egypt, from a very young age until adulthood. Their eyewitness accounts reflect the fact that they were taught and instructed by dark skinned teachers born and raised in Africa. Greed, prestige and reputation made most of them ungrateful, when they claimed all the theories and theorems, formulas and axioms they learned in Ancient Egypt for themselves. Most Greek and Roman students of Africa committed plagiarism by signing their names on their African teachers writings, inventions,
creations and productions.

Thus, we now have: "Theorem of Pythagoras", "Thales'Axiom" among many illegal appropriations of the African sciences of geometry, mathematics, architecture, rhetoric and philosophy. Those operative sciences have been invented and implemented in the heart of Africa, thousands of years before the Greeks and Romans came into existence as a distinct race!

That saga continues today with the renaming of African scientific papyri such as the "Rhind Papyri" and the "Moscow mathematical Papyri". Those Papyri and their scientific content were produced and elaborated thousands of years before Rhind's people were born. Eastern Europe was still under the ice-age with barbaric people. Moscow, nor any of its founders, were even in existence at the time.

Since mankind originated first in Africa, it was necessarily black before becoming white through mutation and adaptation, at the end of the last ice-age in Europe. Scholars both ancient and modern have finally come to the conclusion that, the African people created the world first civilization. Our ancestors did rule the world from its seats of power, enthroned from the valley of the Granges, the Tigris and Euphrates, to the Nile and Niger Rivers.


www.jolofempire.com
www.khidmatulkhadim.org

 

DJENNE, MALI - Oldest known city in sub-Saharan Africa:




Djenné, the oldest known city in sub-Saharan Africa is situated on the
floodlands of the Niger and Bani rivers, 354 kilometers (220 miles)
southwest of Timbuktu. Founded by merchants around 800 AD (near the site of
an older city dating from 250BC), Djenné flourished as a meeting place for
traders from the deserts of Sudan and the tropical forests of Guinea.
Captured by the Songhai emperor Sonni 'Ali in 1468, it developed into Mali's
most important trading center during the 16th century. The city thrived
because of its direct connection by river with Timbuktu and from its
situation at the head of trade routes leading to gold and salt mines.
Between 1591 and 1780, Djenné was controlled by Moroccan kings and during
these years its markets further expanded, featuring products from throughout
the vast regions of North and Central Africa. In 1861 the city was conquered
by the Tukulor emperor al-Hajj 'Umar and was then occupied by the French in
1893. Thereafter, its commercial functions were taken over by the town of
Mopti, which is situated at the confluence of the Niger and Bani rivers, 90
kilometers to the northeast. Djenné is now an agricultural trade center, of
diminished importance, with several beautiful examples of Muslim
architecture, including its Great Mosque.

In addition to its commercial importance, Djenné, was also known as a
center of Islamic learning and pilgrimage, attracting students and pilgrims
from all over West Africa. Its Great Mosque dominates the large market
square of Djenné. Tradition has it that the first mosque was built in 1240
by the sultan Koi Kunboro, who converted to Islam and turned his palace into
a mosque. Very little is known about the appearance of the first mosque, but
it was considered too sumptuous by Sheikh Amadou, the ruler of Djenné in the
early nineteenth century. The Sheikh built a second mosque in the 1830's and
allowed the first one to fall into disrepair. The present mosque, begun in
1906 and completed in 1907, was designed by the architect Ismaila Traoré,
head of Djenné's guild of masons. At the time, Mali was controlled by the
French, who may have offered some financial and political support for the
construction of the mosque and a nearby religious school.

The Great Mosque is built on a raised plinth platform of rectangular
sun-dried mud bricks that are held together by mud mortar and plastered over
with mud. The walls vary in thickness between sixteen and twenty-four
inches, depending upon their height. These massive walls are necessary in
order to bear the weight of the tall structure and also provide insulation
from the sun's heat. During the day, the walls gradually warm up from the
outside; at night, they cool down again. This helps the interior of the
mosque to stay cool all day long. The Great Mosque also has roof vents with
ceramic caps. These caps, made by the town's women, can be removed at night
to ventilate the interior spaces.





Mud mosque of Djenne ..BeginLibraryItem "/library/order_custom.lbi" -->


(Fine Art Print Available)

..EndLibraryItem -->



Djenné's masons have integrated palm wood scaffolding into the building's
construction, not as beams, but as supports for the workers who apply
plaster during the annual spring festival to restore the mosque. In
addition, the palm beams minimize the stress that comes from the extreme
temperature and humidity changes that take place during the year. The facade
of the mosque has the same structure and building materials as a traditional
house in Djenné and includes three massive towers, each topped with a spire
capped by an ostrich egg (these ostrich eggs symbolize fertility and
purity).

Although the Great Mosque incorporates architectural elements found in
mosques throughout the Islamic world, it reflects the aesthetics and
materials used for centuries by the people of Djenné. Its use of local
materials, such as mud and palm wood, its incorporation of traditional
architectural styles, and its adaptation to the hot climate of West Africa
are expressions of its elegant connection to the local environment. Such
earthen architecture, which is found throughout Mali, can last for centuries
if regularly maintained.

The repair or maintenance of the Great Mosque is carried out by the
senior masons, who also coordinate the annual spring replastering. Many of
the citizens of Djenné work to prepare banco (mud mixed with rice husks) for
the event. It may be compared to a community fair "with much festivity and
laughter," as described by a visitor in 1987:

"Every spring Djenné's mosque is replastered. This is a festival at
once awesome, messy, meticulous, and fun. For weeks beforehand mud is
cured. Low vats of the sticky mixture are periodically churned by barefoot
boys. The night before the plastering, moonlit streets echo with chants,
switch-pitch drums, and lilting flutes. A high whistle blows three short
beats. On the fourth, perfectly cued, a hundred voices roar, and the
throng sets off on a massive mud-fetch. By dawn the actual replastering
has been underway for some time. Crowds of young women, heads erect under
the burden of buckets brimming with water, approach the mosque. Other
teams, bringing mud, charge shouting through the huge main square and
swarm across the mosque's terrace. Mixing work and play, young boys dash
everywhere, some caked with mud from head to toe."

In 1988, the old Town of Djenné and its Great Mosque were named a UNESCO
World Heritage Site.

 

 

Timbuktu:

Timbuktu, also spelled TOMBOUCTOU, is a city in the West African nation of Mali. It is historically important as a post on the trans-Saharan caravan route. It is located on the southern edge of the Sahara, about 8 mi (13 km) north of the Niger River. Timbuktu was a centre for the expansion of Islam, an intellectual and spiritual capital at the end of the Mandingo Askia dynasty (1493-1591) and home to a prestigious Koranic university. Three great mosques built at that time, using traditional techniques, still remain.

Timbuktu was founded about AD 1100 as a seasonal camp by Tuareg nomads. After it was incorporated within the Mali Empire, probably in the late 13th century, the Mali sultan, Mansa Musam, built a tower for the Great Mosque (Djingereyber) and a royal residence, the Madugu (the former has since been rebuilt many times, and of the latter no trace now remains). Shortly after this the city was annexed by the Mossi kingdom of Yatenga, but when the North African traveller Ibn Battutah visited in 1353, he found it again governed by Mali.

In the 14th century Timbuktu became an important focal point of the gold-salt trade. With the influx of North African merchants came the settlement of Muslim scholars. It made little difference that the Tuareg regained control of the city in 1433; they ruled from the desert, and, though they plundered periodically, trade and learning continued to flourish.

In 1468 Timbuktu was conquered by Sonni 'Ali, the Songhai ruler. He was generally ill-disposed to the city's Muslim scholars, but his successor--the first ruler of the new Askia dynasty, Muhammad I Askia of Songhai (reigned 1493-1528)--reversed the policy and used the scholarly elite as legal and moral counsellors. During the Askia period (1493-1591) Timbuktu was at the height of its commercial and intellectual development. Merchants from Wadan, Tuwat, Ghudamis (Ghadames), Augila, and the cities of Morocco gathered there to buy gold and slaves in exchange for the Saharan salt of Taghaza and for North African cloth and horses. The city's scholars, many of whom had studied in Mecca or Egypt, attracted students from a wide area.

The city declined after it was captured by Morocco in 1591. Two years later the city's scholars were arrested on suspicion of disaffection; some were killed during a struggle, others were exiled to Morocco. The small Moroccan garrisons could not protect the Niger Bend, and Timbuktu was repeatedly attacked and conquered by the Bambara, Fulani, and Tuareg until 1893, when the French captured the city. The French partly restored the city from the desolate condition in which they found it, but no railway or tarmac road ever reached it. In 1960 it became part of the newly independent Republic of Mali.

Timbuktu is now an administrative centre of Mali. Small salt caravans from Taoudenni still arrive in winter, but there is no gold to offer in exchange, and trans-Saharan commerce no longer exists. Although there is air service, the city remains most easily accessible by camel and boat. Islamic learning survives among a handful of aging scholars, and a Lyc e Franco-Arabe teaches Arabic to the younger generation. Pop. (1976) 19,165.


The Songhay Empire: The Golden Age of Timbuktu
As Timbuktu enjoyed unprecedented success under Moussa, another developing West African kingdom, the Songhay Empire, was increasing its influence over the western Sudan. In about 1464, King Sonni Ali Ber came to the Songhay throne. An able and ambitious ruler, he sent his army to capture the valuable city of Timbuktu in 1468.

In spite of his political achievements, Sonni Ali Ber was not a popular ruler. Although he was a Muslim, he distrusted and mistreated Islamic scholars and did not support the intellectual life of Timbuktu. A few months after the king's death, one of his generals seized the throne, with the support of the people. The general was a devout Muslim called Mohamed Toure, and he took the title of Askia, becoming known as Askia Mohamed.


Askia Mohamed's first ambition was to establish a state and a stable government for the empire. Unlike his predecessor, Askia Mohamed took full advantage of the scholars centered in Timbuktu and used them as advisors on legal and ethical matters. Under his reign, religion and learning once again assumed a primary place in the Songhay Empire.

Leo Africanus, a famous traveler and writer who visited Timbuktu during the reign of Askia Mohamed, wrote the following of the city's intellectual life: "In Timbuktu there are numerous judges, doctors and clerics, all receiving good salaries from the king. He pays great respect to men of learning. There is a big demand for books in manuscript, imported from Barbary. More profit is made from the book trade than from any line of business."1 Under Askia Mohamed's rule, scholarship and Islam were once again revered and supported, ushering in a new era of stability that led to Timbuktu's sixteenth-century golden age.

Askia Mohamed had created the largest and the wealthiest of all the kingdoms of the Sudan. He had a well-administered state, probably the most highly organized of all the African states. With a stable and efficient government and with the support of the Muslim scholars, religious leaders, and traders, Askia Mohamed had made Songhay a great trading empire and a center of Muslim scholarship and learning.


Scholars from all over the Islamic world came to the University of Sankore (as well as the city's over 180 madersas) where courses as varied as theology, Islamic law, rhetoric, and literature were taught. The university was housed in the Sankore Mosque built with a remarkably large pyramidal mihrab in the declining years of the Mali Empire. The university, one of the first in Africa, became so famous that scholars came to it from all over the Muslim world. At this period in African history, the University of Sankore was the educational capital of the western Sudan, where 25,000 students studied a rigorous academic program.

In the book, Timbuctoo the Mysterious, French author Felix Dubois describes the intellectual accomplishments of the ancient African university: "The scholars of Timbuctoo yielded in nothing, to the saints in the sojourns in the foreign universities of Fez, Tunis, and Cairo. They astounded the most learned men of Islam by their erudition. That these Negroes were on a level with the Arabian savants is proved by the fact that they were installed as professors in Morocco and Egypt. In contrast to this, we find that Arabs were not always equal to the requirements of Sankore." 2 As a center of intellectual achievement, Timbuktu earned a place next to Cairo and other leading North African cities.

1Davidson, Basil. The Lost Cities of Africa. (Boston: Little, Brown, 1970), p. 93.

2Dubois, Felix. Timbuctoo the Mysterious. (London: W. Heinemann, 1897), p. 285

 

 

Twenty-sixth Dynasty:

At the close of Ashurbanipal's Egyptian campaign the power of Assyria was at its zenith. He had defeated his foes in all directions, but they were too tenacious of their independence to allow him more than a brief breathing-space. The kingdom of Elam, his hereditary enemy to the east, was the first to give trouble. No sooner was this danger overcome than a new coalition of wider scope came into being, part in which was taken by his own treacherous brother Shamashshumukin, the semi-independent ruler of Babylon. It was clear that Ashurbanipal could retain his hold on the Egyptian Delta only through the loyalty of his own nominees. He was able to leave there only very few Assyrian troops. Esarhaddon had initiated the policy of replacing those princes whom he could not trust by others of his own choice. Among these latter was Neko of Sais, not improbably a descendant of Pi'ankhy's adversary Tefnakhte. But this Neko had soon rebelled and been carried away together with others captive to Nineveh. Evidently, however, Ashurbanipal had recognized in him a man of ability and enterprise since he showed him mercy, loaded him with fine raiment, jewels, and other riches and returned to him Sais as residence where my own father had appointed him king. Nabushezibanni his son I appointed for Athribis, treating him with more friendliness and favor than my own father did. Manetho makes this Neko I the third king of his TWENTY-SIXTH SAITE DYNASTY, preceding his name with those of an unidentifiable Stephinates and an equally problematic Nechepsos. There are good historic reasons, however, for taking Manetho's fourth king Psammetichus I as the real founder of the dynasty. The name, for all its outlandish appearance, is an Egyptian one meaning 'the negus-vendor', a designation apparently connected with Herodotus's story of his improvisation of a libation bowl out of his helmet. On an Apis stele he follows immediately upon Taharka, Tanuatamun not being alluded to. Most of Egypt was now in the hands of independent princes whose interest it was to combine against the foreigner rather than to indulge in internecine strife. Thus came about, with Psammetichus as its leader, the 'Dodecarchy' which Herodotus describes in his usual romantic fashion. The Greek historian's statement that Psammetichus had been a fugitive in Syria from Sabacos who had killed his father Nekos is impossible chronologically; when and where Neko found his death is unknown. There is a possibility that Psammetichus was the son to whom the Assyrian name Nabushezibanni had been given; however, in the account of Ashurbanipal's third campaign contained on the Rassam cylinder he appears with a name very different from both this and the Egyptian form. On the cylinder the circumstance which enabled Psammetichus to free himself from the Assyrian domination is recounted in an altogether trustworthy manner. It is there told that Gyges, the King of Lydia, being attacked by the savage Cimmerian hordes had with Ashurbanipal's help succeeded in repulsing them. But then, as Ashurbanipal writes:

his messenger, whom he kept sending to me to bring me greetings, he discontinued because he did not heed the word of Ashur the god who created me, but trusted in his own strength and hardened his heart,

The result being that the Cimmerians invaded and overpowered the whole of his land. The same passage states that Gyges sent his forces to Tushamilki, King of Egypt, who had thrown over the yoke of my sovereignty. A distorted reference to the troops sent to Egypt by Gyges may possibly be found in the bronze-clad Ionians and Carians who according to Herodotus helped Psammetichus to gain the mastery over the other Delta princes. This will presumably have occupied him during the first years of his reign. No monument of his is dated before year 9. In that year he succeeded in extending his influence over the Thebaid by the method employed other Pharaohs before him. A great stele found at Karnak relates how he sent his eldest daughter Nitocris to become the 'God's Wife' of Amun as successor to Shepenwepe II, the sister of Taharka. The journey to Thebes is described in detail. The 'Master of Shipping' Samtowetefnakhte was in charge of the vessels. He was at the same time mayor of the Heracleopolitan nome, and there is evidence that other members of his family also enjoyed this prerogative, which gave them control over all the river traffic upstream. We have seen that Heracleopolis had acquired special importance in the Libyan period. On arrival at Thebes Nitocris was received with great rejoicing, however, than the opulent feast prepared for her on this occasion were the riches now showered upon her, in seven nomes of Upper Egypt no less than 1,800 aurora of land and in four nomes of the Delta 1,400 more. As a landowner she thus became possessed of some 2,000 acres. But this was not all; the most important priests of Amun, with the pliant Mentemhe at their head, provided her with ample rations, to which were added large quantities of bread contributed by the temples of the principal towns. Needless to say, an able chief steward was required to administer such wealth, and Pbes would have been less than human had he refused to avail himself of this opportunity. However, his tomb at Kurna and that of Iba, another chief steward of this long reign, are considerably less pretentious than those of several others of the same dynasty who held the like post. Sixty years later, when Nitocris was an old woman, the same process renewed itself, and she was forced to accept as her future successor 'Ankhnasneferibre', the daughter of Psammetichus II and the owner of a magnificent sarcophagus now in the British Museum. She arrived in Thebes and was received there by her adoptive mother in the first year of her father's reign, and she appears to have had conferred upon her at the same time the dignity of First Prophet of Amun, a position not accorded to any other 'God's Wife'. It was not until Nitocris died in the fourth year of Apries that she attained to the latter even more important post. These facts are related on a stele now in the Cairo Museum, which dwells upon her installation at Karnak and the attendance upon her of the priesthood, but says nothing about the endowments which had figured so largely in the case of Nitocris. The history of Egypt now becomes increasingly merged into that of the Middle East and of Greece, and our main authorities besides Herodotus are the cuneiform chronicles, the Jewish historian Josephus, and the Old Testament. It does not fall within the scope of this Introduction to deal with the principal facts more than sketchily, and we shall concentrate rather upon whatever the hieroglyphs have to contribute to the general picture. Nevertheless, it will be unavoidable to outline the broad trend of the development. We may pass rapidly over such conventionally worded inscriptions at that of Hor, the military commander at Heracleopolis, in the temple of which he erected many buildings. Nor need we dwell at length on the statue of Nesnimu, a prophet of Horus of Edfu, whom Psammetichus I promoted successively to be mayor of eight different towns, some in the Delta and some in Upper Egypt; the significance of this important act remains to be explained. This, however, is the place to expatiate on two related facts, namely the ever-increasing influx of foreigners into the country and the remarkable degree of archaism shown in the art and the religious texts of the period. It is as though the more mixed the blood of the inhabitants became the greater was the nostalgia for the Old Kingdom when the Pharaohs were true-born Egyptians and their monuments displayed a grandeur the decay of which was now all too apparent. It is in the Saite dynasty that the ancient titles of the nobility were revived, that their sculptures and reliefs were deliberately copied from those of the Old Kingdom, and that their tombs were inscribed with extracts from the Pyramid Texts. From this time onward there is a marked increase in Egyptian religiosity. Animal worship was ever more sedulously cultivated, neighboring provinces and villages actually fighting one another in defense of their own particular preferences. Gifts of land to the temples became very frequent, the king willingly accepted such sacrifices on the part of private owners in order to propitiate the hereditary priesthoods. There can be no doubt but that political considerations played a part in all this, for after all Psammetichus was himself half a Libyan, and the intense nationalism of the Egyptian natives found appeasement in this way. Moreover, Syrians and Jews had poured into the country, the latter forming a colony at Elephantine where they were even permitted to build a temple to their god Yahu, the Jehovah of our Authorized Version. We must here to refer to the different hereditary classes of the population upon which Herodotus lays so much stress. From Ramesside times Libyans and other Mediterranean peoples had, as we have seen, contributed a substantial part to the armies on which the Egyptian monarchs relied; land had been bestowed upon them in return for their services, and it is not to be wondered at if their capabilities were now a large element of exaggeration and distortion about the account given by Herodotus of that portion of the population known to the Greeks as machimoi 'warriors'. According to him they were exclusively trained for war and forbidden to learn any other craft. Also, they were settled in different nomes of the Delta, the Hermotybians and the Calasirians in separate districts of their own. The former name has not been identified in the hieroglyphs, but the latter occurs a number of times as a proper name of which -shire, the second half, is the word for 'little'. But even if there was thus a definite section of the people devoted solely to warfare, it cannot be disputed that the Greeks whom Psammetichus deliberately encouraged also played a large part in a situation fraught with both external and internal dangers. In the wake of the troops sent by Gyges there followed Ionian traders only too glad to obtain a permanent foothold in so fertile and wealthy a land. Psammetichus for his part was content to acquire new forces of proven valor to counterbalance the machimoi who were always more or less under the control of the local princes of their particular districts. A great advantage which accrued to the Saite king was the skill of the Greek colonists as mariners. Their ships carried Egyptian corn to their fatherland, which paid for it with silver. Apart from military action which, as we shall see, became necessary on the northeast border, garrisons had to be maintained on both the western and the southern fronts. Herodotus reports such garrisons 'at Daphnae of Pelusium, another towards Libya at Marea', and a third at Elephantine. He goes on to say that the last-named, not having been relieved for three years, revolted and deserted to Ethiopia, which at that time enjoyed the reputation of a kind of El Dorado. Psammetichus is stated of have set forth in pursuit of them, but to have been unsuccessful in persuading them to return. We have hieroglyphic authority for a similar revolt and desertion under Apries, but on that occasion the superintendent of the southern frontier, Neshor, managed to overpersuade the fugitives. An Apis stele proves that Psammetichus died after a reign of fifty-four years and was succeeded by his son Neko II in 610 BC. The new king was hardly less enterprising than his father, but was less fortunate. His native monuments are not very numerous, and are singularly uninformative. For his achievements at home Herodotus is again the main source. A courageous attempt to link the Nile with the Red Sea by a canal had to be abandoned, but it is almost certain that Phoenician ships sent by him to circumnavigate Africa succeeded in doing so, returning through the Pillars of Hercules in his third year. In order to understand the military undertakings in which Psammetichus and Neko found themselves involved on their northeastern front, we must be given a rough idea of what had been happening there since the former's accession. When the victorious Ashurbanipal withdrew his army from Egypt, no serious retaliation from that quarter was to be expected. It appears, however, that Egyptian troops pursued the retreating Assyrians into Philistia as had happened 900 years earlier after the expulsion of the Hyksos. But Herodotus's account of a twenty-nine year siege of Ashdod, the longest in history, can hardly be correct as it stands. Far more dangerous for Assyria was an invasion of Scythians who swept through that country and, according to the Greek writer, were halted at the Egyptian frontier only by gifts and entreaties on the part of Psammetichus. Even more formidable, however, was the emergence in northwestern Iran of the great new empire of the Medes under Phraortes and his son Cyaxares. In 627 BC Ashurbanipal died, and a year later, after an Assyrian army had been decisively beaten by the Babylonians always striving to assert their independence, Nabopolassar 'sat on the throne in Babylon. All attempts on the part of the Assyrians to regain the lost ground were unsuccessful. By 616 BC it had become clear to Psammetichus that an alliance between Medians and Babylonians would be more dangerous than the Assyrians had ever been, so he decided to throw in his lot with his former enemies. The decision was unfortunate because in 612 BC Niniveh fell and was ravaged and looted with characteristic thoroughness. The Assyrian king Ashur-uballit attempted to carry on the struggle from Harran far to the west, and for the next years the issue remained undecided. From 609 BC no further mention is made of his last king of Assyria, and Neko now took his place as the main adversary of Nabopolassar. When 'Pharaoh-necoh, King of Egypt, went up against' the Babylonians, as we read in the Old Testament, all went well with him at first. King Josiah of Judah made the mistake of intervening at this juncture and was slain at Megiddo by Neko. A hieroglyphic fragment from Sidon attests the later's control of the Phoenician coast, made the easier by his possession of a Mediterranean fleet. In 606-605 BC the Egyptians captured the strong-point of Kimukhu and defeated the Babylonians at Kuramati, both places situated on the Euphrates south of Carchemish. There, according to the Babylonian Chronicle, Nebuchadrezzar, the son of Nabopolassar,

crossed the river to go against the Egyptian army which lay in Carchemish...fought with each other and the Egyptian army withdrew before him. He accomplished their defeat and beat them into non-existence.As for the rest of the Egyptian army which had escaped from the defeat and no weapon had reached them, the Babylonian troops overtook and defeated them in the district of Hamath, so that not a single man escaped to his country. At that time Nebuchadrezzar conquered the whole area of Khatti-land.

or, as 2 Kings xxiv. 7 says,

the king of Egypt came not again any more out of his land; for the king of Babylon had taken, from the brook of Egypt unto the river Euphrates, all that pertained to the king of Egypt.

The great battle of Carchemish took place in 605 BC and Nabopolassar died a month or two later. After Nebuchadrezzar's speedy return to Babylon to assume the kingship he returned to Syria to carry on his campaign against that country. In 604 BC the Babylonians attacked and sacked Ashkelon, an event which may have given rise to an appeal to the Pharaoh for help by a coastal city. We have the authority of the above Old Testament statement for believing that the appeal remained unanswered. Nebuchadrezzar seems never to have given up hope of securing the Egyptian border. In 601 BC, according to the same Babylonian Chronicle, he deliberately marched against Egypt, but was driven back with heavy loss and retired to Babylon. This ended direct hostilities between the two countries for several years to come. The defeat of the Babylonians was probably the cause of Jehoiakim's defection and alliance with Egypt despite the warnings of the prophet Jeremiah. When Neko II died in 595 BC he was succeeded by his son Psammetichus II, whose relatively short reign of six years has frequently been underestimated. In point of fact, the number of monuments naming himself or his officials is considerably greater than that of his two predecessors. Also a much-discussed expedition to Nubia lends it a special interest. Knowledge of this expedition is mainly derived from the longest of a group of Greek inscriptions carved upon one of the colossi of Ramesses II at Abu Simbel. In translation this reads:

When King Psammetichus came to Elephantine, this was written by those who sailed with Psammetichus the son of Theocles, and they came beyond Kerkis as far as the river permits. Those who spoke foreign tongues were led by Potasimto, the Egyptians by Amasis. Both Potasimto and Amasis are known to have lived under Psammetichus II and to have held high military posts. The Nubian expedition is recorded also on much-damaged stele form Tanis and Karnak, the former dating it to year 3 and mentioning a native ruler whose forces had been massacred, while the latter states that Pnubs was reached. But if it is thus certain that the campaign (or was it a mere foray?) extended farther south than was formerly supposed, it is unlikely that, as has been suggested, this was Psammetichus's answer to an Ethiopian attempt to regain the hold upon Egypt lost after Tanuatamun's flight from Thebes. Nevertheless, it was in his reign that a marked hostility towards the Ethiopians on the part of the Saites is first noted, the names of Taharka and his predecessors being systematically erased from their monuments. An equally problematic event of Psammetichus II's reign is an expedition to Phoenicia mentioned in a later demotic papyrus. This seems to have been a peaceful affair since priests form many temples were summoned to take part. Meanwhile the situation in the northeast had grown increasingly complicated. In 590 BC the aggressive Median king Cyaxares became engaged in a fierce war against the neighboring kingdom of Lydia, ended five years later by a diplomatic marriage between the two families. In these circumstances clearly Nebuchadrezzar could look for no help from his powerful ally. Nevertheless, it was impossible for him to remain inactive when in 589 BC Zedekiah of Judah rebelled against him, and at the beginning of the following year he invested the Holy City. In 589 BC Psammetichus II died, and was succeeded by his son Apries, the Pharaoh Hophra of the Bible, who at once set about reversing the peaceful, defensive policy adopted by his predecessors. The prophets Jeremiah and Ezekiel are our main authorities for his intervention in Syria. To meet this attempt to relieve Jerusalem, Nebuchadrezzar broke off the siege, only to renew it later. In 587 BC the city fell and was completely destroyed. Zedekiah was taken prisoner at Jericho. The larger portion of the Jewish population was deported to Babylonia, but later some of the remnant, feeling the situation in Judah to be intolerable, fled to Egypt taking the prophet Jeremiah with them. The part played by Apries in all this is obscure, the Egyptian records being completely silent. At the very beginning of his reign he appears to have sent troops to Palestine in support of the Jews, but then to have withdrawn them. An attack of his army upon Sidon and of his fleet upon Tyre is reported, but at least the first half to the statement does not square with the rest of the evidence. Nor perhaps does the second half, since the exiled priest Ezekiel testifies to a siege of Tyre by Nebuchadrezzar lasting thirteen years without his ever succeeding in capturing the island state. In 570 BC Apries became embroiled in a new and unhappy adventure. Herodotus here takes up the story. At Cyrene, far out on the North-African coast, the Greeks had created a large and thriving colony, the reverse of welcome to the indigenous Libyans. One of the Libyan chieftains, Adicran, turned to Apries for protection. The Egyptian army which was sent suffered an overwhelming defeat. For this Apries was rightly blamed and in consequence lost his throne. Monuments from his reign of nineteen years are fairly numerous, but his importance as a Pharaoh is altogether overshadowed by that of the usurper who supplanted him. When Herodotus's account of Amasis (570-526 BC) is shorn of its lively and picturesque gossip, what is left is likely to be sound history. He was a man of the people upon whom acceptance of the Double Crown was thrust by opportunity and the indignation of his compatriots. The native Egyptians were unanimous in his support, while the troops loyal to Apries were chiefly Greeks, somewhat strangely so since he had recently been fighting against a Greek colony. The civil war that ensued cannot have lasted more than a few months and was confined to the northwestern Delta. Herodotus locates the decisive battle at Momemphis, whereas a great red granite stele which narrated the triumph of Amasis placed it at Sekhetmafka near Terana on the Canopic branch. It is regrettable that this important stele is almost illegible, having been used as the threshold of a palace at Cairo. Apries was taken alive and brought to Sais, which had been his own place of residence and now became that of Amasis. We are told that the victor at first treated his royal prisoner kindly, but later handed him over to the fury of the populace. The stele seems to confirm that he buried him with the honor due to a Pharaoh. A cuneiform fragment in the British Museum ascribes to this same year. The thirty-seventh of Nebuchadrezzar's reign (568-567 BC) some sort of military action against Amasis, but it is unlikely that the two powers ever came into conflict with one another either at this time or later. When the great Babylonian monarch was succeeded by three weak kings and them by a fourth, Nabonidus (555-539 BC), whose troubles never took him nearer to Egypt than northern Syria and Edom. As a ruler Amasis proved predominantly a man of peace. In the west he made a treaty of alliance with Cyrene, and if he brought certain towns on the island of Cyprus into subjection that was his only conquest. Certain it is that dependence upon Greek energy and enterprise became more and more indispensable to him. His own prudence and conciliatory nature made him the well-merited epithet of Philhellene. Symptomatic of these good relations were his marriage to Ladice, a Cyrenaean lady, his large contribution to the rebuilding of the destroyed temple of Delphi, and his rich gifts to several other Greek temples. His friendship with Polycrates, the successful but treacherous tyrant of Samos, is the subject of the well-known story of the ring told by Herodotus. Nevertheless, something had to be done in order to mitigate the envy of the native Egyptians to whom, after all, his debt was enormous. As merchants settled in the Delta the Greeks were becoming unduly powerful. Amasis checked this development by confining their activities to the great city of Naucratis rediscovered by Petrie a little distance to the southwest of Sais. Here the population was exclusively Greek. Great temples were built by the different communities of colonists, and Naucratis became the forerunner of Alexandria and, in its own age, of not much inferior importance. Egyptians and Greeks were alike satisfied. This action on the part of Amasis was a political masterpiece. It was doubtless the result of his own sagacity combined, if Herodotus can be believed, with a convivial and light-hearted temperament that he was able to retain his throne for forty-four years, just escaping the catastrophe which only a year later (525 BC) was to overtake his country. The unification of a world torn by unceasing wars was long overdue and was now to be attempted on a grand scale. This initiative came from a most unexpected quarter. Persia, in the original sense of the name, is the land lying along the eastern side of the Persian Gulf and extending far inland, with Persepolis and Pasargadae as its capitals. From this mountainous and in part inhospitable country arose the Aryan family of the Achaemenids from whom the all-conquering Cyrus II (c. 558-529 BC) sprang. The first kingdom to be overrun was Media, where Astyages, the son of Cyaxares, was able to put up only slight resistance before being ousted from his capital Ecbatana, midway between Susa and the Caspian. Next was the turn of Lydia. Foreseeing what was to come, its king Croesus had sought alliances with Egypt, Babylonia, and Lacedaemon, but before help from them could arrive, Sardis was captured (546 BC) and Lydia ceased to exist as a separate kingdom. The cities of the Ionian coast were now at the Persian monarch's mercy; leaving them in the charge of his generals, Cyrus was free to direct his energies elsewhere. Babylon was naturally his next objective, but he was in no hurry to cope with it. Here Nabonidus, the scholar and antiquarian king, was reigning after a ten years' exile at Taima in Arabia, where he returned in 546 BC on the invitation of the subjects with whom he had previously disagreed. In 539 BC Babylon was occupied, Cyrus with characteristic wisdom sparing the king's life and relegating him to distant Carmania either as governor or as exile. So far-flung and empire would naturally demand much consolidation, and little is heard of Cyrus's military activities during the next few years. He was well aware, however, that the conquest of Egypt was a necessity, and this task he entrusted to his son Cambyses. He himself perished in 529 BC whilst combating attacks by Turanian hordes on his northern frontier. Within thirty years he had arisen from humble beginnings to be the most powerful monarch that the world had thus far ever known.

 

 

THE GLOBAL AFRICAN COMMUNITY :

The words "Black Asia" may be misleading. While some of the populations might indicate Africans in the ancient Diaspora migrating to parts of Asia, most populations of Asia deemed "Black" or (in old parlance) "Negroid," are not African in a modern sense at all. Rather they are examples of peoples who have inhabited Asia for tens of thousands of years but have retained or re-developed features more similar to that of Africans. For a host of political and social reasons, they were deemed with such titles as "Black" or "Negroid" in the common era. Due to a social and political link between themselves and more modern day Africans, there are at times associations--though it should be understood such associations have nothing to do with actual genetic or cultural similarities to Africans. Yet, since the question often persists as to who these people are, and the political "racial social construct" history they share with black Africans, they are mentioned here.

THE GLOBAL AFRICAN COMMUNITY

H I S T O R Y N O T E S


Agta Woman


BLACK PEOPLE IN THE PHILIPPINES

By RUNOKO RASHIDI

DEDICATED TO BROTHER DAVID FAGAN (ANCESTOR)



"There are black Negroes in this island who pay tribute to no one."
--Early Spanish historian

Although the great majority of the people of the Philippines are Tagalog, the country is not ethnically homogeneous. In spite of their small numbers the original inhabitants of the Philippines are the Agta (diminutive Africoids), who still live there in some numbers and are commonly and pejoratively called Pygmies, Negritos and Aeta, and a variety of other names based upon their specific locale. In regards to phenotype, broadly speaking, the Agta can be described as physically small and unusually short in stature, dark-skinned, spiral-haired and broad-nosed. They are an extremely ancient people and, I believe, close representatives of the world's earliest modern humans.

Very similar groups of Black people in Asia reside in relative small numbers in the Andaman Islands in the Bay of Bengal in the Indian Ocean north of the Indonesian island of Sumatra, and in northern Malaysia and southern Thailand in Southeast Asia. In Thailand they are commonly called Sakai. In Malaysia they have been called Orang Asli (Original Man). Pejoratively they are known as Semang, with the connotation of savage. It is very unfortunate that the contributions of these small Black people to monumental high-cultures characterized by urbanization, metallurgy, agricultural science and scripts remain essentially unexamined.

The presence of diminutive Africoids (whom Chinese historians called "Black Dwarfs") in early southern China during the period of the Three Kingdoms (ca. 250 C.E.) is recorded in the book of the Official of the Liang Dynasty (502-556 C.E.). In Taiwan there are recollections of a group of people now said to be extinct called "Little Black Man."

"They were described as short, dark-skinned people with short curly hair....These people, presumably Negritos, disappeared about 100 years ago. Their existence was mentioned in many Chinese documents of the Ching Dynasty concerning Taiwan."

Similar groups of Black people have been identified in Japan, Vietnam, Cambodia and Indonesia, and it seems almost certain that at one time a belt of Black populations of this type covered much of Asia.

In stark contrast to the Agta (the People), the Tagalog seem to have only entered the Philippines during the last several thousand years, and while almost nothing is known of the early history of the Agta in the Philippines it has been well-documented that they engaged in bitter martial conflicts with the Spanish invaders, whose presence in the islands began in the sixteenth century. Indeed, the country was named by the Spanish navigator Ruy Lopez de Villalobos for Prince Philip of Asturias, who, as Philip II, became the king of Spain in 1542. It was also the Spaniards who named the native people of the Philippines "Negritos" (Little Blacks).

The Spanish observed that "The Negritos, which our first conquerors found were, according to tradition, the first possessors of the islands of this Archipelago." Another account observed that "There are black negroes in this island who pay tribute to no one." Similar documents affirm the widespread presence and distribution of the Agta in the Philippines at the time of the Spanish intrusion. "If we are to believe later historians, the shores of some of the islands fairly swarmed with Negritos when the Spaniards arrived." The Bisayan island of Negroes derives its name from having been an Agta population center. Today, however, the Agta probably comprise less than one per cent of the total population of the Philippines.

The Agta men amassed quite a reputation as warriors, and although the accuracy of the report is somewhat questionable, it is said that the Agta were "such enemies to the Spaniards, that if they happen to kill one, they invite all their kindred, and rejoice for three days, drinking out of the skull, clear'd for that purpose; by which means, they afterwards get wives the easier, as being more courageous."

Dr. Pedro A. Gagelonia, a Filipino scholar, citing the commentaries of the European colonizers of the Philippines regarding the Agta, wrote that:

"They were the aborigines of the Philippines, and for a long time had been master of Luzon. At a time not very far distant, when the Spaniards conquered the country, the Aetas levied a kind of blackmail from the Tagalog villages situated on the banks of the lake of Bay (Laguna de Bay). At a fixed period they quitted their forests, entered the village, and forced the inhabitants to give them a certain quantity of rice and maize....After the conquest of the Philippines by the Spaniards, the latter took upon themselves the defense of the Tagalogs, and the Aetas, terrified by their firearms, remained in the forests, and did not reappear among the Indians."

THE ERUPTIONS OF MT. PINATUBO

The violent volcanic eruptions of Mt. Pinutabo in June 1991 were particularly devastating for the Agta. Alternately ignored and discriminated against, many Agta lived on the slopes of the long-dormant volcano that is regarded as the center of their cosmology. Forced down the mountain slopes by the eruptions, numbers of Agta, who have historically relied on the herbal medicines now buried under tons of mud and ash, have perished from dreadful epidemics of measles, diarrhea and pneumonia.

SOURCES:
The Filipinos of Yesterdays, by Pedro A. Gagelonia
The African Presence in Early Asia, edited by Runoko Rashidi


NEGRITO

AETA
The Aetas were the earliest inhabitants in the Philippines. They are nomadic and build only temporary lean-to-shelters made of two forked sticks driven to the ground and covered with the palm of the banana leaves. The more prosperous and modernized Aetas have learned to live in the villages on tablelands and mountain clearings. They live in houses made of bamboo and cogon grass. The Aetas are located in Zambales, Tarlac, Bataan and Nueva Ecija. Due to the eruption of Mt. Pinatubo they were resettled in various resettlement areas in Region 3 like Porac Pampanga and in Dueg, San Clemente, Tarlac.
The Aeta is distinguished by his small structure, kinky hair, flat nose, thick lips, and black skin distinguish the Aeta. His arms are abnormally long and his feet are too large in proportion to his body. Aetas have peculiar characteristic, which is his large toe that extended inward, a feature that might have evolved as consequence of his constant grasping of a tree branch between the large toe and the other toes.
The Aetas senses are highly developed. Their senses of direction and senses of smell is extraordinary. They can track down a snake by its smell and can identify more than five hundred plants and its flowering patterns.
The entertainment fare of the Aetas consists of songs and dances. Their musical instruments are highly developed.
ABIAN
Abians are the Philippine aborigines often called Negritoes. They live in Barrio Igang of Batobalani. Camarines Norte and in Camarines Sur. In 1987 they numbered 12, 407. They are short and dark with kinky hair.
When their homes were bulldozed for forest concessions, they again experienced being driven away from the place by lowlanders. As a result, they have become nomadic and do not possess any material property for fear of losing it whenever they suffer further confiscation.
The Abian house is a semi-permanent lean to called butukan. They get their food by means of the kaingin system, clearing portions of the forest and planting root crops and rice on the cleared area. They also work for landlords by the weeding the fields or helping during harvest time.
Many old customs have been retained by the Abians. The old women of village still assisst mothers in giving birth.
They have no marriage rites, or formal religion. They practice polygamy and do not believe in the Christian God but they believe that there is a life after death. Some are known to put scars on their arms to take away the bad blood.
When an Abian dies, neighbors across the hills are called by shouts to announce patapusan, the death rites that take place three months afterward. At patapusan there is dancing, chanting of the lidong', and weeping and wailing over the passing of a love one.
AGTA
The Agtas are found in the Bicol Peninsula and on the slopes of Mt. Asog, Iriga City. The group population was 11, 078 in 1987.
Like any other Aeta group, they call themselves and their language Agta. They are darkskinned, kinky-haired, pug nosed and think lipped people with a height less than five feet tall.
They generally go bear footed. Men wore G-strings without shorts, but now wear shorts, the women wear clothes similar to lowlanders. They can speak varied languages such as Bicolano, Tagalog, and Agta language. Indigenous materials such as wood, bamboo, cogon or talahib, abaca barks and coconut leaves are used in the house. Houses are built in clusters ranging from two to five families for economic and security purposes.
They get their food by means of the kaingin system. They also work for landlords but receive a very minimal daily wage, not even enough for subsistence.
They marry at an early age of fourteen to their chosen partner but since they have no marriage rites, the couples simply live together as husband and wife. They practiced polygamy and at the present, the Agtas do not subscribe to family planning, believing that marriage is to produce offspring and that only God determines the number of children a couple will have.
The Agta believes in the Anitos and the Spirits of the ancestors to whom they offer dances during rituals. Some dances depict the movements of animals, insects, and hunting movements.
There is no organized political leadership. However the older and more experienced males in the community are consulted for arbitration purposes.
ATI
The dark-skinned Ati group of Panay Island are probably the best known of the Filipino Negritos (Spanish Term of Ati) being the indigenous tribe credited with welcoming history's first Malay datus from Borneo in the fourteenth century. The Ati have retained their dialect with traces of ancient times of "Kiniraya" and dialects of the present time "Iligaynon".
Ati is the local term for their "dark brown" to "scooty black" skin color. They have wavy to kinky hair, pug nose, and thick lips. They are short in stature and generally below five feet tall. Their physical appearance is genetically carried up to the third or fourth generation even with mixed marriages. When the Spanish colonizers came they called the indigenous people of the island Negritoes because of their skin color and also named the Island Negros.
The Atis are scattered in the provinces of Aklan, Capiz, Antique, Iloilo, Guimaras, Negros Occidental and Negros Oriental. The biggest population is settled in Negpana, barangay Lipata, Darotac Viejo (Iloilo). Other bigger groups are found in Hanti (Antique), Malay (Aklan) and Lambunao (Iloilo). The total popultion is 63, 654 (OSCC, 1987)
For economic survival, they are adept at hunting, fishing, and food gathering. Nowadays, they have become less sedentary and constantly move in panung (band). They become the "mountain people" in escaping the civilizing process of the colonists. They are perennially dependent on the yields of the forest, since they practice no permanent agriculture.
Until the modern times, the Atis have used the forest for indigenous medicines as it yields medicinal roots, woodchips, shavings, gums, wines, leaves, seeds, barks and herbs for curing kinds of sickness. They apply such herbs with the corresponding rituals.
Because they are nomadic, the Ati put up their dwellings in the form of a lean-to or shack. During the olden times, most of the Atis went about naked. The Menfolk were ubad to cover their private part, while the women wrapped their lower torso with the sahat leaving their breasts exposed. In recent times, their few clothing are frequently laundered in the stream without use of soap.
The Atis have an animistic religion. They believe in the existence of Kalosonin (spirit of the forest) and the aswang (witch). They will possess a unique wedding rite held on top of a hill. The bride was made to run fast one hundred meters away from the groom. Drums were sounded when the groom started to pursue the woman.

CIMMARON
Cimmarons are found in Buhi, Isarog, Iriga and Caranwan, all of Camarines Sur, Bicol Region numbering to 9,187 (OSCC, 1987). They are dark brown in skin color being the offspring of intermarriages between Aeta and the Malays (Bikolanos), but only a few of them have curly hairs (Jagor, Reisin, p. 106) They are multi-lingual, being able to speak their Cimaaaron language, Bicol and Tagalog.
Their houses are provided with items such as coconut shells, bamboo implements, clay pots, and weapons. Their houses are protected from enemies by means of mantraps or sharpened stakes, which are carefully camouflaged, and hidden in the parts leading to their homes. They cultivate potatoes, gabi, corn, sugarcane, tobacco, etc.
The men's attire is limited to the G-string while the women wear a type of skirt which covers the hips up to a portion just above the knees.
Their weapons are bows and arrows, spears, round wooden shields and a broad sword. They have friendly relations with the Bicolanos with whom they trade agricultural product.
Polygamy is an accepted practice. The woman is sold or purchased with an average price of ten bushknives to ten dollars in cash. (Jagor, Reisin, p. 171) During the marriage, the father of the bride gives a banquet during which much coconut palm wine is drunk.
They believe in the existence of the spirits, which they keep from doing harm by giving offering them food and betel chew. Sometimes a ritual practitioner goes into a trance to communicate with the spirits.
ISAROG
Isarog is the type of Bicol Agta found in the vicinity of the Isarog volcano located in the Iriga around Buhi, near Mazaraga in the Cordillera of the Caramuan, Camarines Sur and in the neighborhood of Libon and Tobaco, Albay. There are 7, 711 (OSCC, 1987) of them scattered in those areas.
Many do not have settlements but they wander around like the Aetas of Negros. Others have houses that are scattered in the jungles. (Cavada, I. p. 213, 221) Those who live in the vicinity of Mazaraga volcano are very friendly and live in peace with Christians, allowing them to have some of their children baptized.
Their physical appearance is like the other Agta groups due to intermarriage of Agta and lowlanders. They have deep-seated eyes, brown skin color, curly hair and a height of a barely five feet tall.
They have an ancient practice like that of the Dayaks of Borneo, which is killing the first stranger that one meets upon the death of one of their relatives. (Jagor, Reisin, p. 164) They can speak other language like Bikolano and Tagalog aside from their Isarog language.
TABANGNON The Tabangnons are group of wild mountain people living in the mountain fastness of Guinayongan in the province of Tayabas down to Paracale, Camarines Norte. (Cavad, I, p. 230) Their population is numbering to 10, 463 (OSCC, 1987)
They are described in such a manner that one sees no difference in their way of life with that of the Agtas. They can speak their Tabangnon language, Bikol and Tagalog, being a multi-lingual speaker. They are reported to raid the Christian Filipino settlements in order to obtain cattle and food.
They are believed to be the offsprings of the Remontado and Agta marriages. Like other Agta tribes, they genetically inherited the curly hair and dark skin of their ancestors, although they are taller compared to other Agtas, since height is attributed to the Remontado physical build.
They are nomadic by nature and because of this they come to know the ways of life of the lowlanders, thus they bacome acculturated and adopted some practices of the Christians without totally losing their own identity by retaining some of their traditional practices.
TABOY
Another dub-tribe of the Agta in Bicol is the so-called Taboy. They inhabit the island of Rapurapu, Albay, both the coastal sea and the inland. Their population is estimated to be 1, 500 (OSCC, 1987)
Their physical structure is somewhat similar to that of Cimarron and Tabangnons of Camarines Sur and Camarines Norte who have dark brown skin, trimmed nose, yellowish brown hair lean mascular ody and average height often less than five feet tall.
The Taboys freely choose their life-partners without the intervention of the parents. Since marriage rites are not practiced, they just live as common husband and wife. They also practice polygamy but for those who converted Catholic, they instituted marriage and monogamy.
Taboys living along the coastal area go fishing for food and sell some for purchase of rice and other household needs. They gather nipa (palm) leaves and make it into Nipa shingles for additional income. They also gather mangroove trees for firewood and charcoal for sale. Others go to mainland Albay and work as laborers.
They respect their elders whom they consultfor whatever problems they have. Recently when OSCC came in to organize they started calling their elected leader a chieftain.



Africoid Populations in the South Seas



The Agta, misnomered "Negritos," are the earliest inhabitants of the Philippines arriving there several thousand years ago. Successive waves of Malay and other Asian peoples intermixed with the Agta to produce the modern Philippino type. The remaining Agta were pushed into the mountain areas by the newly arrived populace. During World War II, many of these peoples provided assistance to guerrilla forces against the Japanese. Today, the Agta remain the most neglected and economically depressed of the Filippinos. Thousands still remain, huddled in shanty towns like Marcos and Macapagal Villages along Clark's northern border. Within the last four years the Philippine government, supported by funds from the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), has begun to make a start at relocating Agta families and providing them with improved educational and medical support. (Information courtesy of Physical Anthropology and Ancient and Modern Warfare)



The first settlers of Papua New Guinea probably reached its shores from Indochina about 50,000 years ago. Some may have continued the journey to become the "aborigines" of Australia, which was still linked by a land bridge to Cape York at that time. Papua New Guinea is a land of immense diversity. No two provinces are alike in the astounding complexity of this country's amazing people. Islolated from the rest of the world for thousands of years, New Guinea has developed much on its own. Known as the "Land of a Thousand Cultures," it can boast over 800 distinct languages and almost as many separate ethnic groups. The varying amounts of artwork and cultural attributes have fascinated outsiders for years. Jorge de Meneses was the first European to set foot on its shores, and named its people "Ilhas dos Papuas", or Land of the Fuzzy Hairs. Due to the Africoid features of its inhabitants, the island was named Papua New Guinea, in reference to the African region of Guinea (a mistake, but a common one of the era). A land of fierce warriors, it was to be over a century (1660AD) before Europeans dared conquer the land. Papua New Guinea gained full independence in 1975. ( Information courtesy of Peoples of the Earth and PNG Online)



The Koori of Australia, commonly referred to as Aborigines, are today called Australoids. They can be traced back to early populations in Southeast Asia and India. They are thought to have migrated through South central and Southeast Asia finally reaching Australia at least 50,000 years ago. Dubbed the world's "original explorers," it is unknown whether they reached Australia by foot or by naval vessels. They lived in relative isolation to the rest of the world until the late 1700s when the British began using Australia as site to deport its convicts. These newly arrived Europeans shattered the native way of life, committing genocidal against its inhabitants. In Tasmania, a small island south of Australia, all full-blooded natives were exterminated by encroaching Europeans. The last genocidal campaign against the native Tasmanians was known as "The Black War." Today the native population of Australia accounts for only 1% of the population and struggle against oppression and racism to secure their future. (Photo and Information courtesy of Physical Anthropology and Peoples of the Earth)

BLACK MALAY FROM THAILAND
Apart from India, there are millions of Blacks in isolated parts of Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, Vietnam, China, the Philipines, Australia and Melanesia. These Blacks fled the Mongoloid invasions of their lands and moved into isolated regions, leaving behind the great civilizatons and cultures they created in Asia to the Mongoloids.

These Blacks were also the original peoples throughout East Asia. That fact was discussed in the television program 'Eve," which showed present-day Black peoples in parts of South East Asia, living in the remote forests.

Blacks are found in large numbers in West Papua where they are being attacked and which is causing furious anger in America, Europe, Africa and among Africans worldwide. Blacs are also found in Papua-New Guinea, Fiji, Vanuatu, Solomon Islands, Australia...the program 'Eve," showed Aborigines who were mixed with whites as being the people who originally settled Australia, but they were very wrong in that portrayal. The original inhabitants were pure Blacks, and the Black Tasmanians, Torres Straits Islanders and Black/Negroid Australian Aborigines are more representative of the type of AFRICAN PEOPLE WHO FIRST SETTLED AUSTRALIA. Furthermore, groups like the Tibbou and Anuak of East Africa look identical to Australian aborigines in features.

BLACK NEGRITO AGTA PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPINES
According to Runoko Rashidi, "Black Untouchables of India," pub. by Clarity Press; Author V.T. Rajshekar, R. Rashidi, Y.N. Kly; The Agta were a large population about the time that the first Spanish settlers arrived in the Philipines.

Today, the Agta live in Negros and the Northern Islands and are lesser in numbers, while the Malay Philipinoes dominate much of the region.

In Indonesia, the same racist and imperialistic trend of taking away Black lands and destroying BLACK CULTURE is taking place particularly in West Papua. Blacks in Africa and the U.S. along with Asia have taken steps to unite and stop the genocide that is taking place. IF GENOCIDE AGAINST BLACKS CAN BE TOLERATED IN PAPUA, THEY SAY, THEN IT CAN BE TOLERATED ELSEWHERE. THE POINT WAS MADE THAT IT WILL NOT BE TOLERATED ANYWHERE. (Conference on Racism, Durban)

The suggestion was also made by the Pan-African community to help create a Black super-state in Melanesia consisting of Papua-New Guinea, West Papua, Fiji Islands, Vanuatu, New Caledonia and all the Black/Negritic islands of the region. It was agreed that only through unity and alliances with the Pan-African community that Blacks in SE ASIA, Melanesia and Australia will be respected, because the might and influence of Blacks worldwide will respond to any violations of Blacks' rights anywhere on earth, whether its Sudan, Mauritania, France or SE Asia.

 

 

BLACK PEOPLE IN THE PHILIPPINES:
By RUNOKO RASHIDI

"There are black Negroes in this island who pay tribute to no one."
--Early Spanish historian
Although the great majority of the people of the Philippines are Tagalog, the country is not ethnically homogeneous. In spite of their small numbers the original inhabitants of the Philippines are the Agta (diminutive Africoids), who still live there in some numbers and are commonly and pejoratively called Pygmies, Negritos and Aeta, and a variety of other names based upon their specific locale. In regards to phenotype, broadly speaking, the Agta can be described as physically small and unusually short in stature, dark-skinned, spiral-haired and broad-nosed. They are an extremely ancient people and, I believe, close representatives of the world's earliest modern humans.
Very similar groups of Black people in Asia reside in relative small numbers in the Andaman Islands in the Bay of Bengal in the Indian Ocean north of the Indonesian island of Sumatra, and in northern Malaysia and southern Thailand in Southeast Asia. In Thailand they are commonly called Sakai. In Malaysia they have been called Orang Asli (Original Man). Pejoratively they are known as Semang, with the connotation of savage. It is very unfortunate that the contributions of these small Black people to monumental high-cultures characterized by urbanization, metallurgy, agricultural science and scripts remain essentially unexamined.
The presence of diminutive Africoids (whom Chinese historians called "Black Dwarfs") in early southern China during the period of the Three Kingdoms (ca. 250 C.E.) is recorded in the book of the Official of the Liang Dynasty (502-556 C.E.). In Taiwan there are recollections of a group of people now said to be extinct called "Little Black Man."
"They were described as short, dark-skinned people with short curly hair....These people, presumably Negritos, disappeared about 100 years ago. Their existence was mentioned in many Chinese documents of the Ching Dynasty concerning Taiwan."
Similar groups of Black people have been identified in Japan, Vietnam, Cambodia and Indonesia, and it seems almost certain that at one time a belt of Black populations of this type covered much of Asia.
In stark contrast to the Agta (the People), the Tagalog seem to have only entered the Philippines during the last several thousand years, and while almost nothing is known of the early history of the Agta in the Philippines it has been well-documented that they engaged in bitter martial conflicts with the Spanish invaders, whose presence in the islands began in the sixteenth century. Indeed, the country was named by the Spanish navigator Ruy Lopez de Villalobos for Prince Philip of Asturias, who, as Philip II, became the king of Spain in 1542. It was also the Spaniards who named the native people of the Philippines "Negritos" (Little Blacks).
The Spanish observed that "The Negritos, which our first conquerors found were, according to tradition, the first possessors of the islands of this Archipelago." Another account observed that "There are black negroes in this island who pay tribute to no one." Similar documents affirm the widespread presence and distribution of the Agta in the Philippines at the time of the Spanish intrusion. "If we are to believe later historians, the shores of some of the islands fairly swarmed with Negritos when the Spaniards arrived." The Bisayan island of Negroes derives its name from having been an Agta population center. Today, however, the Agta probably comprise less than one per cent of the total population of the Philippines.
The Agta men amassed quite a reputation as warriors, and although the accuracy of the report is somewhat questionable, it is said that the Agta were "such enemies to the Spaniards, that if they happen to kill one, they invite all their kindred, and rejoice for three days, drinking out of the skull, clear'd for that purpose; by which means, they afterwards get wives the easier, as being more courageous."
Dr. Pedro A. Gagelonia, a Filipino scholar, citing the commentaries of the European colonizers of the Philippines regarding the Agta, wrote that:
"They were the aborigines of the Philippines, and for a long time had been master of Luzon. At a time not very far distant, when the Spaniards conquered the country, the Aetas levied a kind of blackmail from the Tagalog villages situated on the banks of the lake of Bay (Laguna de Bay). At a fixed period they quitted their forests, entered the village, and forced the inhabitants to give them a certain quantity of rice and maize....After the conquest of the Philippines by the Spaniards, the latter took upon themselves the defense of the Tagalogs, and the Aetas, terrified by their firearms, remained in the forests, and did not reappear among the Indians."
THE ERUPTIONS OF MT. PINATUBO
The violent volcanic eruptions of Mt. Pinutabo in June 1991 were particularly devastating for the Agta. Alternately ignored and discriminated against, many Agta lived on the slopes of the long-dormant volcano that is regarded as the center of their cosmology. Forced down the mountain slopes by the eruptions, numbers of Agta, who have historically relied on the herbal medicines now buried under tons of mud and ash, have perished from dreadful epidemics of measles, diarrhea and pneumonia.
SOURCES:
The Filipinos of Yesterdays, by Pedro A. Gagelonia
The African Presence in Early Asia, edited by Runoko Rashidi

 

 

The Destruction Of The Tasmanian Aborigines:


Truganinni

by Runoko Rashidi


To many, the mention of Tasmania evokes humorous recollections of the Tasmanian devil--the voracious marsupial popularized in American cartoons. Tasmania is an island slightly larger in size than West Virginia, and is located two-hundred miles off Australia's southeast coast. The aboriginal inhabitants of the island were Black people who probably went there by crossing an ancient land bridge that connected Tasmania to the continent of Australia.
The Black aborigines of Tasmania were marked by tightly curled hair with skin complexions ranging from black to reddish-brown. They were relatively short in stature with little body fat. They were the indigenous people of Tasmania and their arrival there began at least 35,000 years ago. With the passage of time, the gradual rising of the sea level submerged the Australian-Tasmanian land bridge and the Black aborigines of Tasmania experienced more than 10,000 years of solitude and physical isolation from the rest of the world--the longest period of isolation in human history.

It is our great misfortune that the Black people of Tasmania bequeathed no written histories. We do not know that they called themselves or what they named their land. All we really have are minute fragments, bits of evidence, and the records and documents of Europeans who began coming to the island in 1642.


THE BLACK FAMILY IN TASMANIA

The Tasmanian aborigines were hunter-gatherers with an exceptionally basic technology. The Tasmanians made only a few types of simple stone and wooden tools. They lacked agriculture, livestock, pottery, and bows and arrows.
The Black family in Tasmania was a highly organized one--its form and substance directed by custom. A man joined with a woman in marriage and formed a social partnership with her. It would appear that such marriages were usually designed by the parents--but this is something about which very little is actually known.

The married couple seems to have remained together throughout the course of their lives, and only in rare cases did a man have more than one wife at the same time. Their children were not only well cared for, but were treated with great affection. Elders were cared for by the the family, and children were kept at the breast for longer than is usual in child care among Europeans.


THE BEGINNING OF THE END OF THE BLACKS

The isolation of Tasmania's Black aborigines ended in 1642 with the arrival and intrusion of the first Europeans. Abel Jansen Tasman, the Dutch navigator after whom the island is named, anchored off the Tasmanian coast in early December, 1642. Tasman named the island Van Diemen's land, after Anthony Van Diemen--the governor-general of the Dutch East India Company. The island continued to be called Van Diemen's Land until 1855.
On March 5, 1772, a French expedition led by Nicholas Marion du Fresne landed on the island. Within a few hours his sailors had shot several Aborigines. On January 28, 1777, the British landed on the island. Following coastal New South Wales in Australia, Tasmania was established as a British convict settlement in 1803.

These convicts had been harshly traumatized and were exceptionally brutal. In addition to soldiers, administrators, and missionaries, eventually more than 65,000 men and women convicts were settled in Tasmania. A glaringly inefficient penal system allowed such convicts to escape into the Tasmanian hinterland where they exercised the full measure of their blood-lust and brutality upon the island's Black occupants. According to social historian Clive Turnbull, the activities of these criminals would soon include the "shooting, bashing out brains, burning alive, and slaughter of Aborigines for dogs' meat."



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PART 2

TASMANIAN DEVILS IN HUMAN FORM

As early as 1804 the British began to slaughter, kidnap and enslave the Black people of Tasmania. The colonial government itself was not even inclined to consider the aboriginal Tasmanians as full human beings, and scholars began to discuss civilization as a unilinear process with White people at the top and Black people at the bottom. To the Europeans of Tasmania the Blacks were an entity fit only to be exploited in the most sadistic of manners--a sadism that staggers the imagination and violates all human morality. As UCLA professor, Jared Diamond, recorded:
"Tactics for hunting down Tasmanians included riding out on horseback to shoot them, setting out steel traps to catch them, and putting out poison flour where they might find and eat it. Sheperds cut off the penis and testicles of aboriginal men, to watch the men run a few yards before dying. At a hill christened Mount Victory, settlers slaughtered 30 Tasmanians and threw their bodies over a cliff. One party of police killed 70 Tasmanians and dashed out the children's brains."

Such vile and animalistic behavior on the part of the White settlers of Tasmania was the rule rather than the exception. In spite of their wanton cruelty, however, punishment in Tasmania was exceedingly rare for the Whites, although occasionally Whites were sentenced for crimes against Blacks. For example, there is an account of a man who was flogged for exhibiting the ears and other body parts of a Black boy that he had mutilated alive.

We hear of another European punished for cutting off the little finger of an Aborigine and using it as a tobacco stopper. Twenty-five lashes were stipulated for Europeans convicted of tying aboriginal "Tasmanian women to logs and burning them with firebrands, or forcing a woman to wear the head of her freshly murdered husband on a string around her neck."

Not a single European, however, was ever punished for the murder of Tasmanian Aborigines. Europeans thought nothing of tying Black men to trees and using them for target practice. Black women were kidnapped, chained and exploited as sexual slaves. White convicts regularly hunted Black people for sport, casually shooting, spearing or clubbing the men to death, torturing and raping the women, and roasting Black infants alive. As historian, James Morris, graphically noted:

"We hear of children kidnapped as pets or servants, of a woman chained up like an animal in a shepherd's hut, of men castrated to keep them off their own women. In one foray seventy aborigines were killed, the men shot, the women and children dragged from crevices in the rocks to have their brains dashed out. A man called Carrotts, desiring a native woman, decapitated her husband, hung his head around her neck and drove her home to his shack."



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PART 3

THE BLACK WAR

"The Black War of Van Diemen's Land" was the name of the official campaign of terror directed against the Black people of Tasmania. Between 1803 and 1830 the Black aborigines of Tasmania were reduced from an estimated five-thousand people to less than seventy-five. An article published December 1, 1826 in the Tasmanian Colonial Times declared that:
"We make no pompous display of Philanthropy. The Government must remove the natives--if not, they will be hunted down like wild beasts and destroyed!"

With the declaration of martial law in November 1828, Whites were authorized to kill Blacks on sight. Although the Blacks offered a heroic resistance, the wooden clubs and sharpened sticks of the Aborigines were no match against the firepower, ruthlessness, and savagery exercised by the Europeans against them.

In time, a bounty was declared on Blacks, and "Black catching," as it was called, soon became a big business; five pounds for each adult Aborigine, two pounds for each child. After considering proposals to capture them for sale as slaves, poison or trap them, or hunt them with dogs, the government settled on continued bounties and the use of mounted police.

After the Black War, for political expediency, the status of the Blacks, who were no longer regarded as a physical threat, was reduced to that of a nuisance and a bother, and with loud and pious exclamations that it was for the benefit of the Blacks themselves, the remainder of the Aborigines were rounded up and placed in concentration camps.

In 1830 George Augustus Robinson, a Christian missionary, was hired to round up the remaining Tasmanian Blacks and take them to Flinders Island, thirty miles away. Many of Robinson's captives died along the way. By 1843 only fifty survived. Jared Diamond recorded that:

"On Flinders Island Robinson was determined to civilize and Christianize the survivors. His settlement--at a windy site with little fresh water--was run like a jail. Children were separated from parents to facilitate the work of civilizing them. The regimental daily schedule included Bible reading, hymn singing, and inspection of beds and dishes for cleanness and neatness.

However, the jail diet caused malnutrition, which combined with illness to make the natives die. Few infants survived more than a few weeks. The government reduced expenditures in the hope that the native would die out. By 1869 only Truganini, one other woman, and one man remained alive."



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PART 4

THE LAST TASMANIANS

With the steady decrease in the number of Aborigines, White people began to take a bizarre interest in the Blacks, whom Whites believed "to be a missing link between humans and apes." In 1859 Charles Darwin's book, On the Origin of Species, popularized the fantasy of biological (and therefore social) evolution, with Whites at the top of the evolutionary scale and Blacks at the bottom.
The Aborigines were portrayed as a group of people "doomed to die out according to a natural law, like the dodo, and the dinosaur." This is during the same period in the United States that it was legally advocated that a Black man had no rights that a White man was bound to respect.

William Lanney, facetiously known as King Billy, was the last full-blood male Tasmanian. He was born in 1835 and grew up on Flinders Island. At the age of thirteen Lanney was removed with the remnant of his people to a concentration camp called Oyster Cove. Ultimately he became a sailor and some years he went whaling. As the last male Tasmanian, Lanney was regarded as a human relic. In January 1860 he was introduced to Prince Albert. He returned ill from a whaling voyage in February 1868, and on March 2, 1868 he died in his room at the Dog and Partridge public-house in Hobart, Tasmania.

Lanney, the subject of ridicule in life, became, in death, a desirable object. Even while he lay in the Colonial Hospital at least two persons determined to have his bones. They claimed to act in the interest of the Royal Society of Tasmania. On March 6, 1868, the day of the funeral, fifty or sixty residents interested in Lanney gathered at the hospital.

Rumors were circulating that the body had been mutilated and, to satisfy the mourners, the coffin was opened. When those who wished to do so had seen the body, the coffin was closed and sealed. Meanwhile it was reported that, on the preceding night, a surgeon had entered the dead-house where Lanney lay, skinned the head, and removed the skull.

Reportedly, the head of a patient who had died in the hospital on the same day was similarly skinned, and the skull was placed inside Lanney's scalp and the skin drawn over it. Members of the Royal Society were "greatly annoyed" at being thus forestalled and, as body-snatching was expected, it was decided that nothing should be left worth taking and Lanney's hands and feet were cut off. In keeping with the tradition no one was punished. William Lanney, the last Black man in Tasmania, was gone.



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QUEEN TRUGANINI: THE LAST TASMANIAN

"Not, perhaps, before, has a race of men been utterly destroyed within seventy-five years. This is the story of a race which was so destroyed, that of the aborigines of Tasmania--destroyed not only by a different manner of life but by the ill-will of the usurpers of the race's land.... With no defences but cunning and the most primitive weapons, the natives were no match for the sophisticated individualists of knife and gun. By 1876 the last of them was dead. So perished a whole people." --Clive Turnbull
On May 7, 1876, Truganini, the last full-blood Black person in Tasmania, died at seventy-three years of age. Her mother had been stabbed to death by a European. Her sister was kidnapped by Europeans. Her intended husband was drowned by two Europeans in her presence, while his murderers raped her.

It might be accurately said that Truganini's numerous personal sufferings typify the tragedy of the Black people of Tasmania as a whole. She was the very last. "Don't let them cut me up," she begged the doctor as she lay dying. After her burial, Truganini's body was exhumed, and her skeleton, strung upon wires and placed upright in a box, became for many years the most popular exhibit in the Tasmanian Museum and remained on display until 1947. Finally, in 1976--the centenary years of Truganini's death--despite the museum's objections, her skeleton was cremated and her ashes scattered at sea.


CONCLUSION

The tragedy of the Black aborigines of Tasmania, however painful its recounting may be, is a story that must be told. What lessons do we learn from the destruction of the Tasmanians? Truganini's life and death, although extreme, effectively chronicle the association not only between White people and Black people in Tasmania, but, to a significant degree, around the world. Between 1803 and 1876 the Black aborigines of Tasmania were completely destroyed.
During this period the Black people of Tasmania were debased, degraded and eventually exterminated. Indeed, given the long and well-documented history of carnage, cruelty, savagery, and the monstrous pain, suffering, and inhumanity Europeans have inflicted upon Black people in general, and the Black people of Tasmania in particular, one could argue that they themselves, the White settlers of Tasmania, far more than the ravenous beast portrayed in American cartoons, have been the real Tasmanian devil.



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POSTSCRIPT

INDIGENOUS TASMANIANS TODAY: SURVIVORS OF THE HOLOCAUST


The above article was written around 1997 and was a part of an ongoing series of articles designed to draw attention to the past and present, the history and the current status, of Black people around the world. In that sense I believe that it is basically a very good article. It should be pointed out though that it was written before my first trip to Australia. More and more, over the the course of time, I have come to find that travel is a wonderful educational experience indeed, and that during the process you often come across information not commonly found in books.
In November 1998 I was invited to speak at the World's Indigenous Peoples Conference in Toowomba, Queensland, Australia. During my Australian sojourn, in addition to the Conference, I was able to travel to several regions and three states. For the first time I interacted with large numbers of Indigenous Australians. The Conference itself was magnificent; a real triumph and one of the great experiences of my life.

Even before the Conference convened, however, I was shocked to meet for the initial time a Black man from Tasmania! He was professor Errol West of the University of Southern Queensland. Prof. West (a noted scholar and an excellent poet) and I quickly developed a close bond and soon became good friends.

We talked and socialized together a great deal and it became readily apparent that only the full-blood Blacks had perished in the holocaust, and that there were Black people living in Tasmania today. Obviously, this was in stark contrast to all of the major writings on the subject. Prof. West also gave me a very different and contrasting view of Truganini.

My trip to Australia gave me a great deal to think about and a lot to reassess. Eighteen months later I returned to Australia and saw even more of this fascinating country, and I have since learned a great deal more about the history and current conditions of the original people.

And the education hasn't stopped. Several months ago I received a series of emails from a Tasmanian sister who expressed tremendous gratitude for the article and encouraged and assured me that the Blacks of Tasmania "are alive and still fighting for our rights and the recognition that we deserve as Indigenous peoples." In 2002 I plan to travel to Tasmania itself. And the education continues.



Runoko Rashidi is an historian, public lecturer and writer engaged in a love affair with Africa. He is currently organizing educational tours to Kenya and Tanzania in April 2001 and Cambodia, Vietnam and Thailand
in November 2001. For information contact Rashidi at RRashidi@swbell.net.

 

BLACK MELANESIANS UNITE:

EAST TIMOR INDEPENDANT:BLACK MELANESIANS UNITE

Posted By: Nubianem
Date: 14, May 02, at 1:05 p.m.

ALL PAN-AFRICANS SHOULD SEND GREETINGS TO THE PEOPLE OF EAST TIMOR AND SUPPORT THE LIBERATION OF THE BLACK MELANESIAN/AND OTHERS WHO ARE SUFFERING IN WEST PAPUA AND S.E.ASIA

Congratulation to the People of East Timor for gaining their independance, is the call by many around the world. Radio station KPFA/KPFB Berkeley brought out some of the probolems faced by East Timor over the past few decades and the struggle to gain their independence.

East Timor, like most of the other islandsd in what is SE Asia/Indonesia are the aboriginal landds of the Black Melanesians, who like Africans and other Blacks around the world were victims of being captured for enslavement by the Semites and Malays, as well as colonialism and genocide since the 1500's A.D.

There are tens of millions of Blacks in Melanesia and these Blacks range from mixed Blacks in East Timor and parts of Indonesia to pure Negro Blacks in Papua New Guinea to further south into New Caledonia. These Africoids are our brothers and sisters and just as Anglo-Saxons in the U.S., England, Australia and New Zeland unite to protect their interests, those of us who believe in Pan-Negroism or Pan-Africanism see the Blacks of East Timor and throughout Asia, including Black Untouchables in India and Black Australian Aboriginals as part of the worldwide Black struggle for human rights, independance and advancement.

Therefore, as East Timorese, who includes Blacks, Malays, Portugese and others celebrate their independance and freedom, Blacks around the world should strengthen the ties with the Eastern Branch of the Black race in Melanesia and South/South-East Asia. We should work for the strengthening of Pan-Africanism or Pan-Negroism around the world and those who are with us we should create strong and effective alliances with them.
Read more about the ancient journies of Black Africans to trade and settle parts of Asia, Europe Australia, India, the Americas in prehistoric and ancient times. See the great work, "Susu Economics: The History of Pan-African Trade, Commerce, Money and Wealth," and the great book, "A History of the African Olmecs: Black Civilizations of America from Prehistoric Times to the Present Era," both published by 1stBooks Library, 2595 Vernal Pike, Bloomington, Indiana 47404 website is 1stbooks dot com Also available at barnesandnoble dot com

Pianke


http://community.webtv.net/paulnubiaempire

 

 

Kush, Meroe, and Nubia:

[Excerpted from Sudan: A Country Study. Helen Chapin Metz, ed. Washington, DC: Federal Research Division of the Library of Congress, 1991]

EARLY HISTORY

Archaeological excavation of sites on the Nile above Aswan has confirmed human habitation in the river valley during the Paleolithic period that spanned more than 60,000 years of Sudanese history. By the eighth millennium B.C., people of a Neolithic culture had settled into a sedentary way of life there in fortified mud-brick villages, where they supplemented hunting and fishing on the Nile with grain gathering and cattle herding. Contact with Egypt probably occurred at a formative stage in the culture's development because of the steady movement of population along the Nile River. Skeletal remains suggest a blending of negroid and Mediterranean populations during the Neolithic period (eighth to third millenia B.C.) that has remained relatively stable until the present, despite gradual infiltration by other elements.

Cush

Northern Sudan's earliest historical record comes from Egyptian sources, which described the land upstream from the first cataract, called Cush, as "wretched." For more than 2,000 years after the Old Kingdom (ca. 2700-2180 B.C.), Egyptian political and economic activities determined the course of the central Nile region's history. Even during intermediate periods when Egyptian political power in Cush waned, Egypt exerted a profound cultural and religious influence on the Cushite people.

Over the centuries, trade developed. Egyptian caravans carried grain to Cush and returned to Aswan with ivory, incense, hides, and carnelian (a stone prized both as jewelry and for arrowheads) for shipment downriver. Egyptian traders particularly valued gold and slaves, who served as domestic servants, concubines, and soldiers in the pharaoh's army. Egyptian military expeditions penetrated Cush periodically during the Old Kingdom. Yet there was no attempt to establish a permanent presence in the area until the Middle Kingdom (ca. 2100-1720 B.C.), when Egypt constructed a network of forts along the Nile as far south as Samnah, in southern Egypt, to guard the flow of gold from mines in Wawat.

Around 1720 B.C., Asian nomads called Hyksos invaded Egypt, ended the Middle Kingdom, severed links with Cush, and destroyed the forts along the Nile River. To fill the vacuum left by the Egyptian withdrawal, a culturally distinct indigenous kingdom emerged at Karmah, near present-day Dunqulah. After Egyptian power revived during the New Kingdom (ca. 1570-1100 B.C.), the pharaoh Ahmose I incorporated Cush as an Egyptian province governed by a viceroy. Although Egypt's administrative control of Cush extended only down to the fourth cataract, Egyptian sources list tributary districts reaching to the Red Sea and upstream to the confluence of the Blue Nile and White Nile rivers. Egyptian authorities ensured the loyalty of local chiefs by drafting their children to serve as pages at the pharaoh's court. Egypt also expected tribute in gold and slaves from local chiefs.

Once Egypt had established political control over Cush, officials and priests joined military personnel, merchants, and artisans and settled in the region. The Coptic language, spoken in Egypt, became widely used in everyday activities. The Cushite elite adopted Egyptian gods and built temples like that dedicated to the sun god Amon at Napata, near present-day Kuraymah. The temples remained centers of official religious worship until the coming of Christianity to the region in the sixth century. When Egyptian influence declined or succumbed to foreign domination, the Cushite elite regarded themselves as champions of genuine Egyptian cultural and religious values.

By the eleventh century B.C., the authority of the New Kingdom dynasties had diminished, allowing divided rule in Egypt, and ending Egyptian control of Cush. There is no information about the region's activities over the next 300 years. In the eighth century B.C., however, Cush reemerged as an independent kingdom ruled from Napata by an aggressive line of monarchs who gradually extended their influence into Egypt. About 750 B.C., a Cushite king called Kashta conquered Upper Egypt and became ruler of Thebes until approximately 740 B.C. His successor, Painkhy, subdued the delta, reunited Egypt under the Twenty-fifth Dynasty, and founded a line of kings who ruled Cush and Thebes for about a hundred years. The dynasty's intervention in the area of modern Syria caused a confrontation between Egypt and Assyria. When the Assyrians in retaliation invaded Egypt, Taharqa (688-663 B.C.), the last Cushite pharaoh, withdrew and returned the dynasty to Napata, where it continued to rule Cush and extended its dominions to the south and east.

Meroe

Egypt's succeeding dynasty failed to reassert control over Cush. In 590 B.C., however, an Egyptian army sacked Napata, compelling the Cushite court to move to a more secure location at Meroe near the sixth cataract. For several centuries thereafter, the Meroitic kingdom developed independently of Egypt, which passed successively under Persian, Greek, and, finally, Roman domination. During the height of its power in the second and third centuries B.C., Meroe extended over a region from the third cataract in the north to Sawba, near present-day Khartoum, in the south.

The pharaonic tradition persisted among a line of rulers at Meroe, who raised stelae to record the achievements of their reigns and erected pyramids to contain their tombs. These objects and the ruins of palaces, temples, and baths at Meroe attest to a centralized political system that employed artisans' skills and commanded the labor of a large work force. A well-managed irrigation system allowed the area to support a higher population density than was possible during later periods. By the first century B.C., the use of hieroglyphs gave way to a Meroitic script that adapted the Egyptian writing system to an indigenous, Nubian-related language spoken later by the region's people. Meroe's succession system was not necessarily hereditary; the matriarchal royal family member deemed most worthy often became king. The queen mother's role in the selection process was crucial to a smooth succession. The crown appears to have passed from brother to brother (or sister) and only when no siblings remained from father to son.

Although Napata remained Meroe's religious center, northern Cush eventually fell into disorder as it came under pressure from the Blemmyes, predatory nomads from east of the Nile. However, the Nile continued to give the region access to the Mediterranean world. Additionally, Meroe maintained contact with Arab and Indian traders along the Red Sea coast and incorporated Hellenistic and Hindu cultural influences into its daily life. Inconclusive evidence suggests that metallurgical technology may have been transmitted westward across the savanna belt to West Africa from Meroe's iron smelteries.

Relations between Meroe and Egypt were not always peaceful. In 23 B.C., in response to Meroe's incursions into Upper Egypt, a Roman army moved south and razed Napata. The Roman commander quickly abandoned the area, however, as too poor to warrant colonization.

In the second century A.D., the Nobatae occupied the Nile's west bank in northern Cush. They are believed to have been one of several well-armed bands of horse- and camel-borne warriors who sold protection to the Meroitic population; eventually they intermarried and established themselves among the Meroitic people as a military aristocracy. Until nearly the fifth century, Rome subsidized the Nobatae and used Meroe as a buffer between Egypt and the Blemmyes. Meanwhile, the old Meroitic kingdom contracted because of the expansion of Axum, a powerful Abyssinian state in modern Ethiopia to the east. About A.D. 350, an Axumite army captured and destroyed Meroe city, ending the kingdom's independent existence.

Christian Nubia

By the sixth century, three states had emerged as the political and cultural heirs of the Meroitic kingdom. Nobatia in the north, also known as Ballanah, had its capital at Faras, in what is now Egypt; the central kingdom, Muqurra, was centered at Dunqulah, the old city on the Nile about 150 kilometers south of modern Dunqulah; and Alwa, in the heartland of old Meroe in the south, had its capital at Sawba. In all three kingdoms, warrior aristocracies ruled Meroitic populations from royal courts where functionaries bore Greek titles in emulation of the Byzantine court.

The earliest references to Nubia's successor kingdoms are contained in accounts by Greek and Coptic authors of the conversion of Nubian kings to Christianity in the sixth century. According to tradition, a missionary sent by Byzantine empress Theodora arrived in Nobatia and started preaching the gospel about 540. It is possible that the conversion process began earlier, however, under the aegis of Coptic missionaries from Egypt, who in the previous century had brought Christianity to the Abyssinians. The Nubian kings accepted the Monophysite Christianity practiced in Egypt and acknowledged the spiritual authority of the Coptic patriarch of Alexandria over the Nubian church. A hierarchy of bishops named by the Coptic patriarch and consecrated in Egypt directed the church's activities and wielded considerable secular power. The church sanctioned a sacerdotal kingship, confirming the royal line's legitimacy. In turn the monarch protected the church's interests. The queen mother's role in the succession process paralleled that of Meroe's matriarchal tradition. Because women transmitted the right to succession, a renowned warrior not of royal birth might be nominated to become king through marriage to a woman in line of succession.

The emergence of Christianity reopened channels to Mediterranean civilization and renewed Nubia's cultural and ideological ties to Egypt. The church encouraged literacy in Nubia through its Egyptian-trained clergy and in its monastic and cathedral schools. The use of Greek in liturgy eventually gave way to the Nubian language, which was written using an indigenous alphabet that combined elements of the old Meroitic and Coptic scripts. Coptic, however, often appeared in ecclesiastical and secular circles. Additionally, early inscriptions have indicated a continuing knowledge of colloquial Greek in Nubia as late as the twelfth century. After the seventh century, Arabic gained importance in the Nubian kingdoms, especially as a medium for commerce.

The Christian Nubian kingdoms, which survived for many centuries, achieved their peak of prosperity and military power in the ninth and tenth centuries. However, Muslim Arab invaders, who in 640 had conquered Egypt, posed a threat to the Christian Nubian kingdoms. Most historians believe that Arab pressure forced Nobatia and Muqurra to merge into the kingdom of Dunqulah sometime before 700. Although the Arabs soon abandoned attempts to reduce Nubia by force, Muslim domination of Egypt often made it difficult to communicate with the Coptic patriarch or to obtain Egyptian-trained clergy. As a result, the Nubian church became isolated from the rest of the Christian world.

THE COMING OF ISLAM

The coming of Islam eventually changed the nature of Sudanese society and facilitated the division of the country into north and south. Islam also fostered political unity, economic growth, and educational development among its adherents; however, these benefits were restricted largely to urban and commercial centers.

The spread of Islam began shortly after the Prophet Muhammad's death in 632. By that time, he and his followers had converted most of Arabia's tribes and towns to Islam (literally, submission), which Muslims maintained united the individual believer, the state, and society under God's will. Islamic rulers, therefore, exercised temporal and religious authority. Islamic law ( sharia), which was derived primarily from the Quran, encompassed all aspects of the lives of believers, who were called Muslims ("those who submit" to God's will).

Within a generation of Muhammad's death, Arab armies had carried Islam north and east from Arabia into North Africa. Muslims imposed political control over conquered territories in the name of the caliph (the Prophet's successor as supreme earthly leader of Islam). The Islamic armies won their first North African victory in 643 in Tripoli (in modern Libya). However, the Muslim subjugation of all of North Africa took about seventy-five years. The Arabs invaded Nubia in 642 and again in 652, when they laid siege to the city of Dunqulah and destroyed its cathedral. The Nubians put up a stout defense, however, causing the Arabs to accept an armistice and withdraw their forces.

The Arabs

Contacts between Nubians and Arabs long predated the coming of Islam, but the arabization of the Nile Valley was a gradual process that occurred over a period of nearly 1,000 years. Arab nomads continually wandered into the region in search of fresh pasturage, and Arab seafarers and merchants traded in Red Sea ports for spices and slaves. Intermarriage and assimilation also facilitated arabization. After the initial attempts at military conquest failed, the Arab commander in Egypt, Abd Allah ibn Saad, concluded the first in a series of regularly renewed treaties with the Nubians that, with only brief interruptions, governed relations between the two peoples for more than 600 years. So long as Arabs ruled Egypt, there was peace on the Nubian frontier; however, when non-Arabs acquired control of the Nile Delta, tension arose in Upper Egypt.

The Arabs realized the commercial advantages of peaceful relations with Nubia and used the treaty to ensure that travel and trade proceeded unhindered across the frontier. The treaty also contained security arrangements whereby both parties agreed that neither would come to the defense of the other in the event of an attack by a third party. The treaty obliged both to exchange annual tribute as a goodwill symbol, the Nubians in slaves and the Arabs in grain. This formality was only a token of the trade that developed between the two, not only in these commodities but also in horses and manufactured goods brought to Nubia by the Arabs and in ivory, gold, gems, gum arabic, and cattle carried back by them to Egypt or shipped to Arabia.

Acceptance of the treaty did not indicate Nubian submission to the Arabs, but the treaty did impose conditions for Arab friendship that eventually permitted Arabs to achieve a privileged position in Nubia. For example, provisions of the treaty allowed Arabs to buy land from Nubians south of the frontier at Aswan. Arab merchants established markets in Nubian towns to facilitate the exchange of grain and slaves. Arab engineers supervised the operation of mines east of the Nile in which they used slave labor to extract gold and emeralds. Muslim pilgrims en route to Mecca traveled across the Red Sea on ferries from Aydhab and Sawakin, ports that also received cargoes bound from India to Egypt.

Traditional genealogies trace the ancestry of most of the Nile Valley's mixed population to Arab tribes that migrated into the region during this period. Even many non-Arabic-speaking groups claim descent from Arab forebears. The two most important Arabic-speaking groups to emerge in Nubia were the Jaali and the Juhayna. Both showed physical continuity with the indigenous pre-Islamic population. The former claimed descent from the Quraysh, the Prophet Muhammad's tribe. Historically, the Jaali have been sedentary farmers and herders or townspeople settled along the Nile and in Al Jazirah. The nomadic Juhayna comprised a family of tribes that included the Kababish, Baqqara, and Shukriya. They were descended from Arabs who migrated after the thirteenth century into an area that extended from the savanna and semidesert west of the Nile to the Abyssinian foothills east of the Blue Nile. Both groups formed a series of tribal shaykhdoms that succeeded the crumbling Christian Nubian kingdoms and that were in frequent conflict with one another and with neighboring non-Arabs. In some instances, as among the Beja, the indigenous people absorbed Arab migrants who settled among them. Beja ruling families later derived their legitimacy from their claims of Arab ancestry.

Although not all Muslims in the region were Arabic-speaking, acceptance of Islam facilitated the arabizing process. There was no policy of proselytism, however, and forced conversion was rare. Islam penetrated the area over a long period of time through intermarriage and contacts with Arab merchants and settlers. Exemption from taxation in regions under Muslim rule also proved a powerful incentive to conversion.

The Decline of Christian Nubia

Until the thirteenth century, the Nubian kingdoms proved their resilience in maintaining political independence and their commitment to Christianity. In the early eighth century and again in the tenth century, Nubian kings led armies into Egypt to force the release of the imprisoned Coptic patriarch and to relieve fellow Christians suffering persecution under Muslim rulers. In 1276, however, the Mamluks (Arabic for "owned"), who were an elite but frequently disorderly caste of soldier-administrators composed largely of Turkish, Kurdish, and Circassian slaves, intervened in a dynastic dispute, ousted Dunqulah's reigning monarch and delivered the crown and silver cross that symbolized Nubian kingship to a rival claimant. Thereafter, Dunqulah became a satellite of Egypt.

Because of the frequent intermarriage between Nubian nobles and the kinswomen of Arab shaykhs, the lineages of the two elites merged and the Muslim heirs took their places in the royal line of succession. In 1315 a Muslim prince of Nubian royal blood ascended the throne of Dunqulah as king. The expansion of Islam coincided with the decline of the Nubian Christian church. A "dark age" enveloped Nubia in the fifteenth century during which political authority fragmented and slave raiding intensified. Communities in the river valley and savanna, fearful for their safety, formed tribal organizations and adopted Arab protectors. Muslims probably did not constitute a majority in the old Nubian areas until the fifteenth or sixteenth century.

 

 

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BLACK CIVILIZATIONS OF ANCIENT AMERICA (MUU-LAN), MEXICO(XI):

 

BLACK CIVILIZATIONS OF ANCIENT AMERICA (MUU-LAN),
MEXICO (XI)


Gigantic stone head of Negritic African
during the Olmec (Xi) Civilization


The earliest people in the Americas were people of the Negritic African race, who entered the Americas perhaps as early as 100,000 years ago, by way of the bering straight and about thirty thousand years ago in a worldwide maritime undertaking that included journeys from the then wet and lake filled Sahara towards the Indian Ocean and the Pacific, and from West Africa across the Atlantic Ocean towards the Americas.
According to the Gladwin Thesis, this ancient journey occurred, particularly about 75,000 years ago and included Black Pygmies, Black Negritic peoples and Black Australoids similar to the Aboriginal Black people of Australia and parts of Asia, including India.



Ancient African terracotta portraits 1000 B.C. to 500 B.C.
Recent discoveries in the field of linguistics and other methods have shown without a doubt, that the ancient Olmecs of Mexico, known as the Xi People, came originally from West Africa and were of the Mende African ethnic stock. According to Clyde A. Winters and other writers (see Clyde A. Winters website), the Mende script was discovered on some of the ancient Olmec monuments of Mexico and were found to be identical to the very same script used by the Mende people of West Africa. Although the carbon fourteen testing date for the presence of the Black Olmecs or Xi People is about 1500 B.C., journies to the Mexico and the Southern United States may have come from West Africa much earlier, particularly around five thousand years before Christ. That conclusion is based on the finding of an African native cotton that was discovered in North America. It's only possible manner of arriving where it was found had to have been through human hands. At that period in West African history and even before, civilization was in full bloom in the Western Sahara in what is today Mauritania. One of Africa's earliest civilizations, the Zingh Empire, existed and may have lived in what was a lake filled, wet and fertile Sahara, where ships criss-crossed from place to place.

ANCIENT AFRICAN KINGDOMS PRODUCED
OLMEC TYPE CULTURES

The ancient kingdoms of West Africa which occupied the Coastal forest belt from Cameroon to Guinea had trading relationships with other Africans dating back to prehistoric times. However, by 1500 B.C., these ancient kingdoms not only traded along the Ivory Coast, but with the Phoenicians and other peoples. They expanded their trade to the Americas, where the evidence for an ancient African presence is overwhelming. The kingdoms which came to be known by Arabs and Europeans during the Middle Ages were already well established when much of Western Europe was still inhabited by Celtic tribes. By the 5th Century B.C., the Phoenicians were running comercial ships to several West African kingdoms. During that period, iron had been in use for about one thousand years and terracotta art was being produced at a great level of craftsmanship. Stone was also being carved with naturalistic perfection and later, bronze was being used to make various tools and instruments, as well as beautifully naturalistic works of art.


The ancient West African coastal and interior Kingdoms occupied an area that is now covered with dense vegetation but may have been cleared about three to four thousand years ago. This includes the regions from the coasts of West Africa to the South, all the way inland to the Sahara. A number of large kingdoms and empires existed in that area. According to Blisshords Communications, one of the oldest empires and civilizions on earth existed just north of the coastal regions into what is today Mauritania. It was called the Zingh Empire and was highly advanced. In fact, they were the first to use the red, black and green African flag and to plant it throughout their territory all over Africa and the world.

The Zingh Empire existed about fifteen thousand years ago. The only other civilizations that may have been in existance at that period in history were the Ta-Seti civilization of what became Nubia-Kush and the mythical Atlantis civilization which may have existed out in the Atlantic, off the coast of West Africa about ten to fifteen thousand years ago. That leaves the question as to whether there was a relationship between the prehistoric Zingh Empire of West Africa and the civilization of Atlantis, whether the Zingh Empire was actually Atlantis, or whether Atlantis if it existed was part of the Zingh empire. Was Atlantis, the highly technologically sophisticated civilization an extension of Black civilization in the Meso-America and other parts of the Americas?



Stone carving of a Shaman or priest
from Columbia's San Agustine Culture




An ancient West African Oni or King holding similar artifacts
as the San Agustine culture stone carving of a Shaman


The above ancient stone carvings (500 t0 1000 B.C.) of Shamans of Priest-Kings clearly show distinct similarities in instruments held and purpose. The realistic carving of an African king or Oni and the stone carving of a shaman from Columbia's San Agustin Culture indicates diffusion of African religious practices to the Americas. In fact, the region of Columbia and Panama were among the first places that Blacks were spotted by the first Spanish explorers to the Americas.


From the archeological evidence gathered both in West Africa and Meso-America, there is reason to believe that the African Negritics who founded or influenced the Olmec civilization came from West Africa. Not only do the collosol Olmec stone heads resemble Black Africans from the Ghana area, but the ancient religious practices of the Olmec priests was similar to that of the West Africans, which included shamanism, the study of the Venus complex which was part of the traditions of the Olmecs as well as the Ono and Dogon People of West Africa. The language connection is of significant importance, since it has been found out through decipherment of the Olmec script, that the ancient Olmecs spoke the Mende language and wrote in the Mend script, which is still used in parts of West Africa and the Sahara to this day.

ANCIENT TRADE BETWEEN THE AMERICAS AND AFRICA

The earliest trade and commercial activities between prehistoric and ancient Africa and the Americas may have occurred from West Africa and may have included shipping and travel across the Atlantic. The history of West Africa has never been properly researched. Yet, there is ample evidence to show that West Africa of 1500 B.C. was at a level of civilization approaching that of ancient Egypt and Nubia-Kush. In fact, there were similarities between the cultures of Nubia and West Africa, even to the very similarities between the smaller scaled hard brick clay burial pyramids built for West African Kings at Kukia in
pre Christian Ghana and their counterparts in Nubia, Egypt and Meso-America.

Although West Africa is not commonly known for having a culture of pyramid-building, such a culture existed although pyramids were created for the burial of kings and were made of hardened brick. This style of pyramid building was closer to what was built by the Olmecs in Mexico when the first Olmec pyramids were built. In fact, they were not built of stone, but of hardened clay and compact earth.

Still, even though we don't see pyramids of stone rising above the ground in West Africa, similar to those of Egypt, Nubia or Mexico, or massive abilisks, collosal monuments and structures of Nubian and Khemitic or Meso-American civilization. The fact remains, they did exist in West Africa on a smaller scale and were transported to the Americas, where conditions
such as an environment more hospitable to building and free of detriments such as malaria and the tsetse fly, made it much easier to build on a grander scale.



Meso-American pyramid with stepped appearance,
built about 2500 years ago




Stepped Pyramid of Sakkara, Egypt, built over
four thousand years ago, compare to Meso-American pyramid


Large scale building projects such as monuent and pyramid building was most likely carried to the Americas by the same West Africans who developed the Olmec or Xi civilization in Mexico. Such activities would have occurred particularly if there was not much of a hinderance and obstacle to massive, monumental building and construction as there was in the forest and malaria zones of West Africa. Yet, when the region of ancient Ghana and Mauritania is closely examined, evidence of large prehistoric towns such as Kukia and others as well as various monuments to a great civilization existed and continue to exist at a smaller level than Egypt and Nubia, but significant enough to show a direct connection with Mexico's Olmec civilization.

The similarities between Olmec and West African civilization includes racial, religious and pyramid bilding similarities, as well as the similarities in their alphabets and scripts as well as both cultures speaking the identical Mende language, which was once widespread in the Sahara and was spread as far East as Dravidian India in prehistoric times as well as the South Pacific.

During the early years of West African trade with the Americas, commercial seafarers made frequent voyages across the Atlantic. In fact, the oral history of a tradition of seafaring between the Americas and Africa is part of the history of the Washitaw People, an aboriginal Black nation who were the original inhabitants of the Mississippi Valley region, the former Louisiana Territories and parts of the Southern United States. According to their oral traditions, their ancient ships criss-crossed the Atlantic Ocean between Africa and the Americas on missions of trade and commerce..

Some of the ships used during the ancient times, perhaps earlier than 7000 B.C. (which is the date given for cave paintings of the drawings and paintings of boats in the now dried up Sahara desert) are similar to ships used in parts of Africa today. These ships were either made of papyrus or planks lashed with rope, or hollowed out tree trunks.

These ancient vessels were loaded with all type of trade goods and not only did they criss-cross the Atlantic but they traded out in the Pacific and settled there as well all the way to California. In
fact, the tradition of Black seafarers crossing the Pacific back and forth to California is much older than the actual divulgance of that fact to the first Spanish explorers who were told by the American Indians that Black men with curly hair made trips from California's shores to the Pacific on missions of trade.

On the other hand, West African trade with the Americas before Columbus and way back to proto historic times (30,000 B.C. to 10,000 B.C.), is one of the most important chapters in ancient African history. Yet, this era which begun about 30,000 years ago and perhaps earlier (see the Gladwin Thesis, by C.S.Gladwin, Mc Graw Hill Books), has not been part of the History of Blacks in the Americas. Later on in history, particularly during the early Bronze Age.

However, during the latter part of the Bronze Age, particularly between 1500 B.C. to 1000 B.C., when the Olmec civilization began to bloom and flourish, new conditions in the Mediterranean made it more difficult for West Africans to trade by sea with the region, although their land trade accross the Sahara was flourishing. By then, Greeks, Phoenicians, Assyrians, Babylonians and others were trying to gain control of the sea routes and the trading ports of the region. Conflicts in the region may have pushed the West Africans to strengthen their trans-Atlantic trade with the Americas and to explore and settle there.



Ancient sea-going vessel used by the Egyptians
and Nubians in ancient times.


West African Trade and Settlement in the Americas Increases Due to Conflicts in the Mediterranean
The flowering of the Olmec Civilization occurred between 1500 B.C. to 1000 B.C., when over twenty-two collosal heads of basalt were carved representing the West African Negritic racial type.
This flowering continued with the appearance of "Magicians," or Shamanistic Africans who observed and charted the Venus planetary complex (see the pre-Christian era statuette of a West African Shaman in the photograph above)
These "Magicians," are said to have entered Mexico from West Africa between 800 B.C. to 600 B.C. and were speakers of the Mende language as well as writers of the Mende script or the Bambara script, both which are still used in parts of West Africa and the Sahara.

These Shamans who became the priestly class at Monte Alban during the 800's to 600's B.C. ( ref. The History of the African-Olmecs and Black Civilization of the Americas From Prehistoric Times to the Present Era), had to have journied across the Atlantic from West Africa, for it is only in West Africa, that the religious practices and astronomical and religious practices and complex (Venus, the Dogon Sirius observation and the Venus worship of the Afro-Olmecs, the use of the ax in the worship of Shango among he Yoruba of West Africa and the use of the ax in Afro-Olmec worship as well as the prominence of the thunder God later known as Tlalock among the Aztecs) are the same as those practiced by the Afro-Olmec Shamans. According to Clyde Ahmed Winters (see "Clyde A. Winters" webpage on "search."

Thus, it has been proven through linguistic studies, religious similarities, racial similarities between the Afro-Olmecs and West Africans, as well as the use of the same language and writing script, that the Afro-Olmecs came from the Mende-Speaking region of West Africa, which once included the Sahara.

Sailing and shipbuilding in the Sahara is over twenty thousand years old. In fact, cave and wall paintings of ancient ships were displayed in National Geographic Magazine some years ago. Such ships which carried sails and masts, were among the vessels that swept across the water filled Sahara in prehistoric times. It is from that ship-building tradition that the Bambara used their knowledge to build Thor Hayerdhal's papyrus boat Ra I which made it to the West Indies from Safi in Morroco years ago. The Bambara are also one of the West African nationalities who had and still have a religious and astronomical complex similar to that of the ancient Olmecs, particularly in the area of star gazing.

A journey across the Atlantic to the Americas on a good current during clement weather would have been an easier task to West Africans of the Coastal and riverine regions than it would have been through the use of caravans criss-crossing the hot by day and extremely cold by night Sahara desert. It would have been much easier to take a well made ship, similar to the one shown above and let the currents take it to the West Indies, and may have taken as long as sending goods back and forth from northern and north-eastern Africa to the interior and coasts of West Africa's ancient kingdoms. Add to that the fact that crossing the Sahara would have been no easy task when obsticales such as the hot and dusty environment, the thousands of miles of dust, sand and high winds existed. The long trek through the southern regions of West Africa through vallies, mountains and down the many rivers to the coast using beasts of burden would have been problematic particularly since malaria mosquitoes harmful to both humans and animals would have made the use of animals to carry loads unreliable.

Journeys by ship along the coast of West Africa toward the North, through the Pillars of Heracles,
eastward on the Mediterran to Ports such as Byblos in Lebanon, Tyre or Sydon would have been two to three times as lengthy as taking a ship from Cape Verde, sailing it across the Atlantic and landing in North-Eastern Brazil fifteen hundred miles away, or Meso America about 2400 miles away. The distance in itself is not what makes the trip easy. It is the fact that currents
which are similar to gigantic rivers in the ocean, carry ships and other vessels from West Africa to the Americas with relative ease.

West Africans during the period of 1500 B.C. to 600 B.C. up to 1492 A.D. may have looked to the Americas as a source of trade, commerce and a place to settle and build new civlilzations. During the period of 1500 B.C. to 600 B.C., there were many conflicts in the Mediterranean involving the Kushites, Egyptians, Assyrians, Phoenicians, Sea Peoples, Persians, Jews and others. Any kingdom or nation of that era who wanted to conduct smoothe trade without complications would have tried to find alternative trading partners. In fact, that was the very reason why the Europeans decided to sail westwared in their wearch for India and China in 1492 A.D. They were harrassed by the Arabs in the East and had to pay heavy taxes to pass through the region.

Still, most of the Black empires and kingdoms such as Kush, Mauri, Numidia, Egypt, Ethiopia and others may have had little difficulty conducting trade among their neighbors since they also were among the major powers of the region who were dominant in the Mediterranean.
South of this northern region to the south-west, Mauritania (the site of the prehistoric Zingh Empire) Ghana, and many of the same nationalities who ushered in the West African renaissance of the early Middle Ages were engaged in civilizations and cultures similar to those of Nubia, Egypt and the Empires of the Afro-Olmec or Xi (Shi) People.


Nubian-Kushite King and Queen (circa 1000 B.C.)
It is believed that there was a Nubian presence in Mexico and that the West African civilizations were related to that of the Nubians, despite the distance between the two centers of Black civilization in Africa. There is no doubt that in ancient times there were commercial ties between West Africa and Egypt. In fact, about 600 B.C., Nikau, a Pharaoh of Egypt sent ships to circumnavigate Africa and later on about 450 B.C., Phoenicians did the same, landing in West Africa in the nation now called Cameroon. There they witnessed what may have been the celebration of a Kwanza-like harvest festival, where "cymbals, horns," and other instruments as well as smoke and fire from buring fields could be seen from their ships.

At that period in history, the West African cultures and civilizations, which were offshoots of much earlier southern Saharan cultures, were very old compared to civilizations such as Greece or Babylon. In fact, iron was being used by the ancient West Africans as early as 2600 years B.C. and was so common that there was no "bronze age" in West Africa, although bronze was used for ornaments and instruments or tools.

A combination of Nubians and West Africans engaged in mutual trade and commerce along the coasts of West Africa could have planned many trips to and from the Americas and could have conducted a crossing about 1500 B.C. and afterwards. Massive sculptures of the heads of typical Negritic Africans were carved in the region of South Mexico where the Olmec civilization flourished. Some of these massive heads of basalt contain the cornrow hairstyle common among West African Blacks, as well as the kinky coiled hair common among at least 70 percent of all Negritic people, (the other proportion being the Dravidian Black race of India and the Black Australoids of Australia and South Asia).



Collossol Afro-Olmec head of basalt wearing
Nubian type war helmet, circa 1100 B.C.



Afro-Olmecs Came from the Mende Regions of West Africa
Although archeologists have used the name "Olmec," to refer to the Black builders of ancient Mexico's first civilizations, recent discoveries have proven that these Afro-Olmecs were West Africans of the Mende language and cultural group. Inscriptions found on ancient monuments in parts of Mexico show that the script used by the ancient Olmecs was identical to that used by the ancient and modern Mende-speaking peoples of West Africa. Racially, the collosal stone heads are identical in features to West Africans and the language deciphered on Olmec monuments is identical to the Mende language of West Africa, (see Clyde A. Winters) on the internet.

The term "Olmec" was first used by archeologists since the giant stone heads with the features of West African Negritic people were found in a part of Mexico with an abundance of rubber trees. The Maya word for rubber was "olli, and so the name "Olmec," was used to label the Africoid Negritic people represented in the faces of the stone heads and found on hundreds of terracotta figurines throughout the region.

Yet, due to the scientific work done by deciphers and linguists, it has been found out that the ancient Blacks of Mexico know as Olmecs, called themselves the Xi People (She People).
Apart from the giant stone heads of basalt, hundreds of terracotta figurines and heads of people of Negritic African racial reatures have also been found over the past hundred years in Mexico and other parts of Meso-America as well as the ancient Black-owned lands of the Southern U.S. (Washitaw Proper,(Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, Arkansas), South America's Saint Agustin Culture in the nation of Colombia, Costa Rica, and other areas) the "Louisiana Purchase,"
lands, the south-eastern kingdom of the Black Jamassee, and other places including Haiti, see
the magazine Ancient American).

Various cultural clues and traces unique to Africa as well as the living descendants of prehistoric and ancient African migrants to the Americas continue to exist to this very day. The Washitaw Nation of Louisiana is one such group (see www.Hotep.org), the Garifuna or Black Caribs of the Caribbean and Central America is another, the descendants of the Jamasse who live in Georgia and the surrounding states is another group. There are also others such as the Black Californian of Queen Calafia fame (the Black Amazon Queen mentioned in the book Journey to Esplandian, by Ordonez de Montalvo during the mid 1500's).

Cultural artefacts which connect the ancient Blacks of the Americas with Africa are many. Some of these similarities can be seen in the stone and terracotta works of the ancient Blacks of the Americas. For example, the African hairline is clearly visible in some stone and terracotta works, including the use of cornrows, afro hair style, flat "mohawk" style similar to the type used in Africa, dreadlocks, braided hair and even plain kinky hair. The African hairline is clearly visible on a fine stone head from Veracruz Mexico, carved between 600 B.C. to 400 B.C., the Classic Period of Olmec civilization. That particular statuette is about twelve inches tall and the distance from the head to the chin is about 17 centemeters. Another head of about 12 inches, not only posesses Negroid features, but the hair design is authentically West African and is on display at the National Museum of Mexico. This terracotta Africoid head also wears the common disk type ear plugs common in parts of Africa even today among tribes such as the Dinka and Shilluk.

One of the most impressive pieces of evidence which show a direct link between the Black Olmec or Xi People of Mexico and West Africans is the presence of scarification marks on some Olmec terracotta sculpture. These scarification marks clearly indicate a West African Mandinka (Mende) presence in prehistoric and ancient Meso-America. Ritual scarification is still practiced in parts of Africa and among the Black peoples of the South Pacific, however the Olmec scarification marks are not of South Pacific or Melanesian Black origins, since the patterns used on ancient Olmec sculpture is still common in parts of Africa. This style of scarification tatooing is still used by the Nuba and other Sudanese African people. In fact, the face of a young girl with keloid scarification on here face is identical to the very same keloid tatoos on the face of an ancient Olmec terracotta head from ancient Mexico. Similar keloid tattoos also appear on the arms of some Sudanese and are identical to similar keloid scars on the arms of some clay figures from ancient Olmec terracotta figurines of Negroid peoples of ancient Mexico.




Bronze head of an ancient king from Benin, West Africa,
The tradition of fine sculpture in West Africa goes back long before 1000 B.C.




Collosal head of Afro-Olmec (Xi) warrior-king, circa 1100 B.C.



Descendants of Ancient Africans in Recent America
In many parts of the Americas today, there are still people of African Negritic racial backgrounds who continue to exist either blended into the larger African-Americas population or are parts of separate, indigenous groups living on their own lands with their own unique culture and languages.

One such example is the Washitaw Nation who owned about one million square miles of the former Louisiana Territories, (see www.Hotep.org), but who now own only about 70,000 acres of all their former territory. The regaining of their lands from the U.S. was a long process which concluded partially in 1991, when they won the right to their lands in a U.S. court.

The Black Californian broke up as a nation during the late 1800's after many years of war with the Spanish invaders of the South West, with Mexico and with the U.S. The blended into the Black population of California and their descendants still exist among the millions of Black Californians of today.

The Black Caribs or Garifunas of the Caribbean Islands and Central America fought with the English and Spanish from the late fifteen hundreds up to 1797, when the British sued for peace. The Garifuna were expelled from their islands but they prospered in Central America where hundreds of thousands live along the coasts today.

The Afro-Darienite is a significant group of pre-historic, pre-columbian Blacks who existed in South America and Central America. These Blacks were the Africans that the Spanish first saw during their exploration of the narrow strip of land between Columbia and Central America and who were described as "slaves of our lord" since the Spaniards and Europeans had the intention of enslaving all Blacks they found in the newly discovered lands.

The above mentioned Blacks of precolumbian origins are not Blacks wo mixed with the Mongoloid Indian population as occurred during the time of slavery. They were Blacks who were in some cases on their lands before the southward migrations of the Mongoloid Native Americans. In many cases, these Blacks had established civilizations in the Americas thousands of years ago.



An early Black Californian, a member of the original Black
aboriginal people of California and the South Western U.S.




A member of one of the original Black nations of the Americas,
the Afro-Darienite of Panama.




Stone carving of Negroid person found in area
close to Washitaw Territories, Southern U.S.


THE USE OF ANCIENT AFRICAN SHIPS AND BOATS TO TRADE WITH THE AMERICAS
Protohistoric, prehistoric and ancient Negritic Africans were masters of the lands as well as the oceans. They were the first shipbuilders on earth and had to have used watercraft to cross from South East Asia to Australia about 60,000 years ago and from the West Africa/Sahara inland seas region to the Americas. The fact of the northern portion of Africa now known as a vast desert wasteland being a place of large lakes, rivers and fertile regions with the most ancient of civilizations is a fact that has been verified, (see African Presence in Early America, edt. Ivan Van Sertima and Runoko Rashidi, Transaction Publishers, New Bruinswick, NJ "The Principle of Polarity," by Wayne Chandler: 1994.)

From that region of Africa as well as East Africa, diffusions of Blacks towards the Americas as early as 30,000 B.C. are believed to have occurred based on findings in a region from Mexico to Brazil which show that American indians in the region include Negritic types (eg. Olmecs, Afro-Darienite, Black Californians, Chuarras, Garifunas and others). Much earlier journeys occurred by land sometime before 75,000 B.C. according to the Gladwin Thesis written by C.S. Gladwin. This migration occurred on the Pacific side of the Americas and was began by Africans with Affinities similar to the people of New Guinea, Tasmania, Solomon Islands and Australia. The earliest migrations of African Blacks through Asia then to the Americas seemed to have occurred exactly during the period that the Australian Aborigines and the proto-African ancestors of the Aborigines, Oceanic Negroids (Fijians, Solomon Islanders, Papua-New Guineans,and so on) and other Blacks spread throughout East Asia and the Pacific Islands about one hundred thousand years ago. The fact that these same Blacks are still among the world's seafaring cultures and still regard the sea as sacred and as a place of sustinence is evidence of their ancient dependance on the sea for travel and exploration as well as for commerce and trade. Therefore, they would have had to build sea-worthy ships and boats to take them across the vast expanses of ocean, including the Atlantic, Indian Ocean (both the Atlantic and Indian Oceans were called the Ethiopean Sea, in the Middle Ages) and the Pacific Ocean.

During the historic period close to the early bronze or copper using period of world history (6000 B.C. to 4000 B.C. migrations of Africans from the Mende regions of West Africa and the Sahara across the Atlantic to the Americas may have occurred. In fact, the Mende agricultural culture was well established in West Africa and the Sahara during that period. Boats still criss-crossed the Sahara, as they had been doing for over ten thousand years previously. The ancient peoples of the Sahara, as rock paintings clearly show, were using boats and may have sailed from West Africa and the Sahara to the Americas, including the Washitaw territories of the Midwestern and Southern U.S. Moreover, it is believed by the aboriginal Black people of the former Washitaw Empire who still live in the Southern U.S., that about 6000 B.C., there was a great population shift from the region of Africa and the Pacific ocean, which led to the migrations of their ancestors to the Americas to join the Blacks who had been there previously.

As for the use of ships, ancient Negritic peoples and the original Negroid peoples of the earth may have began using boats very early in human history. Moreover, whatever boats were used did not have to be sophisticated or of huge size. In fact, the small, seaworthy "outrigger" canoe may have been spread from East Africa to the Indian Ocean and the Pacific by the earliest African migrants to Asia and the Pacific regions. Boats of papyrus, skin, sewed plank, log and hollowed logs were used by ancient Africans on their trips to various parts of the world.




Gigantic stone head of Afro-Olmec (Xi People)
of ancient Mexico, circa 1100 B.C.




Face of Afro-Olmec child carved on the waste "belt" of an Olmec ballplayer


This stone belt was used by the Olmec ballplayers to catch the impact of the rubber balls in their ball games. This face is typical Negritic, including the eyes which seem to "slant," a common racial characteristic in West Africa, the Sahara and in South Africa among the Kong-San (Bushmen) and other Africans.


TRADE ROUTES OF THE ANCIENT BLACKS
During the years of migrations of Africans to all parts of the world, those who crossed the Atlantic, Indian Ocean and Pacific also used the seas to make trips to the northern parts of Africa. They may have avoided the northern routes across the deserts at particular times of the year and sailed northward by sailing parallel to the coastslines on their way northward or southward, just as the Phoenicians, Nubians and Egyptians had done.
Boats made of skin, logs, hollowed ttee trunk, lashed canoes and skin could have been used for trading and commerce.

The reed boat is a common type of watercraft used in West Africa and other parts of the world, yet there were other boats and ships to add to those already mentioned above. Boats similar to those of Nubia and Egypt were being used in the Sahara just as long or even longer than they were being used in Egypt. In fact, civilization in the Sahara and Sudan existed before Egypt was settled by Blacks from the South and the Sahara.

The vessels which crossed the Atlantic about 1500 B.C. (during the early Afro-Olmec period) were most likely the same types of ships shown in the sahara cave paintings of ships dating to about 7,000 B.C. or similar ships from Nubian rock carvings of 3000 B.C..

Egyptologists such as Sir Flinders Petrie believed that the ancient African drawings of ships represent papyrus boats similar to the one built by the Bambara People for Thor Hayerdhal on the shores of Lake Chad. This boat made it to Barbadose, however they did not reinforce the hull with rope as the ancient Egyptians and Nubians did with their ancient ships. That lack of reinforcement made the Bambara ship weak, however another papyrus ship built by Ayamara Indians in Lake Titicaca, Bolivia was reinforced and it made it to the West Indies without difficulty.

Naval historian Bjorn Landstrom believes that some of the curved hulls shown on rock art and pottery from the Nubian civilization (circa 3000 B.C.) point to a basic three-plank idea. The planks would have been sewn together with rope. The larer version must have had some interior framing to hold them together. The hulls of some ot these boats show the vertical extension of the bow and stern which may have been to keep them bouyant.

These types of boats are stilll in use in one of the most unlikely places. The Djuka and Saramaka Tribes of Surinam, known also as 'Bush Negroes,"
build a style of ship and boat similar to that of the Ancient Egyptians and Nubians, with their bows and sterns curving upward and pointing vertically.

This style of boat is also a common design in parts of West Africa, particularly along the Niger River where extensive river trading occurs. They are usually carved from a single tree trunk which is used as the backbone. Planks are then fitted alongside to enlarge them. In all cases, cabins are built on top of the interior out of woven mat or other strong fiberous material. These boats are usually six to eight feet across and about fifty feet long. There is evidence that one African Emperor Abubakari of Mali used these "almadias" or longboats to make a trip to the Americas during the 1300's.(see, They Came Before Columbus, Ivan Van Sertima; Random House: 1975)

Apart from the vessels used by the West Africans and south western Sahara Black Africans to sail across the Atlantic to the Americas, Nubians, Kushites, Egyptians and Ethiopians were known traders in the Mediterranean. The Canaanites, the Negroid inhabitants of the Levant who later became the Phoenicians also were master seafarers. This has caused some to speculate that the heads of the Afro-Olmecs represent the heads of servants of the Phoenicians, yet no dominant people would build such massive and collosol monuments to their servants and not to themselves.

Check for historical references and literature

ANTHROPOLOGISTS BELIEVE THERE WAS AN ANCIENT BLACK PRESENCE IN THE AMERICAS


During the International Congress of American Anthropologists held in Bacelona, Spain in 1964, a French anthropologist pointed out that all that was missing to prove a definite presence of Negritic Blacks in the Americas before Columbus was Negroid skeletons to add to the already found Negroid featured terracottas. Later on February of 1975 skeletons of Negroid people dating to the 1200's were found at a precolumbian grave in the Virgin Islands. Andrei Wierzinski, the Polish crainologist also concluded based on the study of skeletons found in Mexico, that a good portion of the skulls were that of Negritic Blacks,

Based on the many finds for a Black African Negroid presence in ancient Mexico, some of the most enthusiastic proponents of a pre-columbian Black African presence in Mexico are Mexican professionals. They conclude that Africans must have established early important trading centers on the coasts along Vera Cuz, from which Middle America's first civiliztion grew.

In retrospect, ancient Africans did visit the Americas from as early as about 100,000 B.C. where they stayed for tens of thousands of years. By 30,000 B.C., to about 15,000 B.C., a massive migration from the Sahara towards the Indian Ocean and the Pacific in the East occurred from the Sahara. Blacks also migrated Westward across the Atlantic Ocean towards the Americas during that period until the very eve of Columbus' first journey to the Americas.

Trade, commerce and exploration as well as the search for new lands when the Sahara began to dry up later in history was the catalyst that drove the West Africans towards the Atlantic and into the Americas.

REFERENCES


Washitaw Nation (www.Hotep.org )

Clyde A. Winters (The Nubians and the Olmecs)

Blacks of India dalitstan.org   

Blacks of the Pacific and Melanesia:
www.cwo.com/~lucumi/pacific.html

If you ever visit the ancient Afro-Olmec monuments of Mexico, the Washitaw Nation of Louisiana, the monuments of Nubia, Egypt or West Africa you need to take great pictures:
www.photoalley.com



DESCENDANTS OF PRECOLUMBIAN BLACKS IN THE U.S., CARIBBEAN, CENTRAL AMERICA AND SOUTH AMERICA AND THE FIGHT FOR THE RETURN OF THEIR STOLEN OCCUPIED LANDS
IN THE MIDST OF THE REPARATIONS DEBATE THE ISSUE OF RETURNING THE LANDS OF THESE BLACKS WHO ANCESTORS WERE HERE IN THE U.S. AND AMERICAS BEFORE COLUMBUS HAS ALREADY BEEN DONE WITH ONE BLACK NATION OF THE LOUISIANA TERRITORIES


The experience of the Washitaw Nation (or Ouchita Nation) of the Southern United States is another piece of solid evidence for the fact of pre-Columbian African presence and settlement in the Americas and specifically in the United States. According to an article carried in the magazine, 'The Freedom Press Newsletter, (Spring, 1996), reprinted from Earthways, The Newsleter of the Sojourner Truth Farm School (August, 1995), the Washitaw were
(and still are) a nation of Africans who existed in the Southern U.S. and Mississippi Valley region long before the 16th century Europeans arrived and even before there were "Native Americans" on the lands the Washitaw once occupied and still occupy today.

According to the article, "the Washitaw Nation "governed three million acres of land in Louisiana,
Arkansas, Oklahoma, Texas and Mississippi. They were ship builders (similar to the Garifuna of the Caribbean, who are also of pre-Columbian West Afrucan Mandinka Muslim origins (according to Harold Lawrence in 'African Presence in Early America,edt. by Ivan Van Sertima).

What is even more facinating about this aspect of hidden history of Blacks in America before Columbus is that the Washitaw Nation was known and recognized as a separate, independant Black nation by the Spanish and French, who were in the Louisiana Territories and Texas areas. According to the present leader of the Washitaw Nation, "when Spain ceeded the Louisiana Territory to France, they excluded the land belonging to the Washitaw Nation. France did not include it in the "Louisiana Purchase," and according to the leader, "This land
is not part of the United States of America." That point was made in the newspaper, "The Capitol Spotlight, June 1992.

In fact, the courts agreed that the land was not part of the U.S. and that in fact the Washitaw (Ouchita) Nation was on the land long before European Colonization: therefore, in legal decisions made, some of the ancient territory was returned. This historical decision was made about 1991.

This is the type of information seldom seen in the majority press, yet, the importance of that event clearly points to the incredible service small papers and magazines such as Ancient American or the Capitol Spotlight and The Freedom Press Newsletter have been making, along iwth internet news and information sites such as this one. So, here we see an example in the continental United States where Africans who came before slavery, before Columbus and thousands of years before Christ (over six thousand years B.C., according to the Washitaw chroniclers), were engaged in boat building, seafaring, trade and commerce in ancient times and who still exist today as a distinct Black Nation who have evidence and proof of their ownership of millions of acres of lands in the Southern U.S. and the Mississippi Valley. The Washitaw Nation held an important convention in June 1992, in Monroe, Louisiana and have held others since. (see www.Hotep.org for the Washitaw's point of view on their history and culture).

Yet, the Washitaw is merely one nation of the descendants of pre-columbian Blacks from Africa and elsewhere and possibly from right here in the Americas as the very first people to exist here, long before the development of the Mongoloid, American Indians or the Mongoloid( 15,000 B.C.) or even the Caucasian races (30,000 B.C.). Pure Black Homosapiens began to migrate from Africa and populate the entire earth about 200,000 to 150,000 years ago, according to scientists, historians and anthropologists.

Among the other Black nations who existed in the Americas before Columbus and long before Christ were the Jamassee (Yamassee), who had a large kingdom in the South eastern U.S., Their descendants were among the first Blacks of pre-columbian American origins who fell victim to kidnapping for the purpose of enslavement. Blacks of South America, the Caribbean and Central America were also attacked and enslaved based on a Pontifax passed during the mid- 1400's by the Church hierachy giving the Europeans the go ahead to enslave all "Children of Ham" found in the newly discovered territories. The descendants of the Jamassee are the millions of Blacks who live in Alabama, Gerogia, South Carolina and northern Florida. They of course also have African slave ancestors, but these slaves are the relatives of the same Africans who sailed to America of their own free will, while Europe was in the Dark Ages, and long before Christ, for that matter.

In California, descendnats of the fierce "Black Californians" who were a Negroid people of African racial origins and the original owners of California and the South WEST (BEFORE THE SPANISH INVSION...OR THE CREATION OF THE MIXED RACE "HISPANIC" ETHNIC GROUP.
Many African-Americans in California are of Black Californian ancestry and their great grand parents were among the original Black Californians who were victims of Spanish Californio enslavement and Anglo American settler attacks. In fact, the Black Californian fought until the late 1800's to maintain control of their ancestral lands from the settlers. THAT'S A FACT.

There are aboriginal nations of Blacks in Panama such as the Afro-Darienite and the Choco people.
In fact, the Afro-Darienite are the remnants of the aboriginal Black nations of South and Central America who were once hunted down to be made slaves by the Spaniards (in fact Balboa or Peter Matyr chroniclers referred to these Blacks as "slaves of our lord," ) meaning, like Blacks in Africa, the South Pacific and elsewhere, they were eligible for enslavement, being descended from Ham, the so-called "father of the Black race."

In Columbia's Choco Region, on the Western side of that country, there are hundreds of thousands of Blacks, whose ancestors have been in Columbia for thousands of years. In fact, scientists and some historians have found out that Black slaves were being kidnapped and hunted down in Columbia and parts of South and Central America, as well as the Caribbean and U.S., by the Spaniards and others long before they began to look for slaves in Africa. (an old painting in Natonal Geographic clearly shows a black with bow and arrow and wearing a loin cloth, hunting along the coast of Columbia during the first voyage there by the Spaniards.
These Blacks today of the Choco Region of Columbia are among the most oppressed of Blacks in Latin America today (See the Final Call back issues on this topic)

Then there is the Garifuna or Kalifunami also called "Black Caribs" Being a member of the Black Carib Nation and having done historical research, the myth of the Black Caribs being escaped slaves has been debunked. It is true that the Black Caribs encouraged slaves from the West Indies Islands to join them and that the Black Caribs did ally with the Mongoloid Caribs of Dominica and other parts of the West Indies, but the fact remains, that the Black Caribs were originally Mende traders of gold and cloth, who established settlements throughout the Circum-Caribbean region, Mexico, Central America, South America and the Southern U.S.
They had been arriving in the Americas for thousands of years, even before they converted to Islam during the 900's A.D.. In fact, the Olmecs of ancient Mexico were Mende, they used the Mende script (found on monments at Monte Alban, Mexico, and they named places from southern Mexico to South America with Mandinka names. Such names sometimes sound identical to the names of places used in West Africa.

In retrospect, while the debate for reparations increses, it is important that African-Americans know that two great injustices were committed by the Europeans. The first was slavery, the second was the taking of Black lands and destroying Black history and culture so Blacks remain totally ignorant of their rights to more than one third of north America. NOW YOU KNOW WHY THE SLAVEMASTERS DID NOT WANT BLACK FOLK TO LEARN TO READ, AND WHY PLANTS ARE PLACED IN CHATROOMS AND ON FORUMS TO ATTEMPT TO DISCREDIT ANY USEFUL HISTORY AND INFORMATION OFFERED TO BLACK PEOPLE.

Still, TRUTH SUBMERGED SHALL RISE AGAIN.


SUSU ECONOMICS

THE HISTORY OF PAN-AFRICAN TRADE, COMMERE, WEALTH AND MONEY
(A Preview of the Facinating History of the Development of Ancient Black Civilizations Worldwide)

One of the most important aspects of Black history worldwide is the development of Black civilization due to the early and persisten use and application of trade and commerce. Due to such early and well organized trading and commercial systems throughout the prehistoric Black world, Blacks were able to expand throughout the world and establish the world's first cultures and civilizations. Although it is said that Blacks migrated from the original homeland of mankind in Africa to settle all Asia, Europe, Australia and the Americas (see Scientific American; Sept. 2000, p. 80-87...this is a recent publication), long before the differentiation of the races from the original Negritic to Negriic, Caucasoid, Mongoloid, along with the various mixed races such as Polynesians, Native Americans, Japanese, Malays, Mediterranean whites, East Indians (the mixed Negroid/Caucasian type...not the pure Black pre Aryan Negritic Indians), Arabs, Latinos (Mestizos, Mullatoes, Zambos, Spaniards) and a number of other mixed races and regional types, the purpose of the earlies migrations of Blacks from Africa to the rest of the world was not merely following and hunting wild animals, as some theorists have claimed, but searching for commodities, like red ocre to paint the smooth, dark skin from insects and decoration. Another purpose for the early migrations of Africans to other parts of the world was to establish trading and commercial links to those of their own people, who had left previously. Hence, even if the earliest migrations were after wandering herds of animals, further migrations were in search of links with their kinsmen and women.


The migrations of Africans to all parts of the world within the past hundred thousand years
or more occurred before an other races existed. Thus, Black culture and civilization was being established when no other "races" existed as we know them today. This is a facinating historical even, because having been homosapiens for over one hundred thousand years, it is very possible that Blacks could have gone through many periods of cultural development and civilization before the beginning of the Nile Valley civilization (since about 17,000 B.C.) or the Zingh Civilization of the South-Western Sahara (15,000 B.C.), or even Atlantis (10,000 B.C.), or the building of the Sphinx (7,000 B.C.).
In fact, there is evidence from ancient East Indian chronicles (some of these pictures are on AAWR (African American Web Ring) of the geat scientific advancement of the Black prehistoric inhabitants of the Indus Valley Civilization (6000 b.c. to 1700 b.c), who built flying machines, who had flushing toilets, cities on a gridlike pattern, and many of what we may call "modern" conviniences.

About 20,000 years ago, the present-day dried up and desertified Sahara had an aquatic civilization where the Africans who lived on the edges of the giant inland sea, built large ocean-going ships. Rock paiintings of these ships can still be seen in the Sahara (and some appeared on national geographic magazine about two years ago). (For more on the Aquatic Civilizations of the prehistoric Sahara, see, "African Presence In Early Asia," by Ivan Van Sertima and Runoko Rashidi, Transaction Publications, New Bruinswick, NJ).

The Africans who used these boats (which are still used today by tribes such as the Baduma of Mali, West Africa) made of papyrus straw. These same type of boats were used to travel to the Americas, the Indian Ocean, the South Pacific, India, East Asia and the Pacific, then to the Americas via the Pacific Ocean. In fact, the Fijians still consider Africa's East Coast to be their very ancient homeland and Africans in East Africa have oral as well as written histories of ancient journies towards Asia.
In ancient times, trade between Africans in Africa and those in the Indian Ocean, East Asia and the Pacific Ocean, East Asia, the Americas, the Mediterranean, the Black Sea area and all the continents including Australia. In all these areas, evidence of prehistoric African Blacks exist. IT IS VERY IMPORTANT TO NOTE THAT SUCH EVIDENCE WAS AGAIN FOUND IN SOUTH AMERICA, WHERE ABOUT FIFTY SKULLS REPRESENTING NEGROID PEOPLE WERE FOUND IN BRAZIL (see Scientific American, September 2000). However, this is no news to some Blacks, particularly those descended from the ancient prehistoric Blacks of America, such as the Wasitaw of the Louisiana area, the descendants of the Black Californians, the Jamassee and others; the Black Caribs of the Caribbean and Central America, the Choco Region Blacks of Columbia, South America and many others.

This book examines the history of Black trade and commerce. It examines how money was made in ancient times and how this legacy continued well into the colonial era to this very day.

In a time when Blacks worldwide are suffering economically, this book clearly contributes to the knowledge and helps build the confidence needed to initiate a Black world economic renaissance and Black economic, social, numerical and cultural development among Black Americans and Blacks elsewhere.

More Pages by Paul Barton

THE VANISHING EVIDENCE OF CLASSICAL AFRICAN CIVILIZATIONS

 

Black Civilisations In Europe.

Septimus Severus, African Ruler of Rome:

Septimus Severus, African Ruler of Rome





Septimus Severus
The birth of Septimus Severus in 145 A.D. is celebrated on April 26. He was a North African General and Ruler of the Roman Empire.

From Leptis Magna in Tripolitinia, near the 1st Century city of Al Khums in Libyia, Severus reigned as emperor from 193 to 211. His father was Publius Septimus Geta and his mother was Fulvia Pia. Both his mother and father descended from members of successful equestrian families who had strong political ties.

Little is known about his early background or career, but Severus became quaestor of Rome around 169 A.D. Shortly after becoming quaestor he married Paccia Marciana ; a few years later she died, childless. He then became the tribune of plebs in 174, and then praetor (early law professions) in 177. In 179 he went to Syria to serve as legal representative. Shortly after he was in office he was removed. A major turning point occurred in 184 A.D. when he became an imperial favorite.

Commodus (Ruler) appointed him as post governor of Gallia, under Lugdenensis. A year later Commodus promoted him, making him governor of Sicily. Severus remarried to Julia Domna, a Syrian noble woman. Julia gave birth to his two sons Carracalla in 188 and Geta in 189. In 190 Severus became consul of Rome. Then in 192, Commodous was assassinated and Pertinax succeeded him. The Praetorian Guard later killed Pertinax, because they did not agree with his visions for Rome.

Then the guard offered the emperorship to Didius Julianus. This greatly angered Severus and many others who supported him. Out of his anger and with support from his army he accepted his soldier’s salutation and began to march towards Rome. He overcame all opposition, and in 193, seized control of Rome. Septimus Severus died in 211 A.D.

 

 

MELANESIA:

THE STRUGGLE CONTINUES!

Melanesia (the Black islands of the South Pacific) has been described as the eastern flank of the African world, an expression of ages past when an uninterrupted belt of Black people stretched across Africa, Eurasia, Australia, Oceanica and ancient America. In 1545 Spain made a claim on New Guinea, the largest and most populous island in Melanesia. Indeed, New Guinea is the largest island in the world after Greenland. It is tremendously wealthy in mineral resources, including uranium, copper cobalt, silver, gold, manganese, iron and oil. In 1545 Spain made a claim on the island and called it Nueva Guinea because of the striking resemblance between Melanesians and West Africans. Other Melanesian islands include New Caledonia, the Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Fiji, New Ireland and New Britain.

Split into two by colonial design, New Guinea has until recently contained a racially homogeneous population of five to six million Africoid people. The eastern half of the island became independent in 1975 under the name of Papua New Guinea. In a 1976 interview, Foreign Minister Ben Tanggahma of Papua New Guinea insisted that:

"Africa is our motherland. All of the Black populations which settled in Asia over the hundreds of thousands of years, came undoubtedly from the African continent. In fact, the entire world was populated from Africa. Hence, we the Blacks in Asia and the Pacific today descend from proto-African peoples. We were linked to Africa in the past. We are linked to Africa in the present. We will be linked to Africa in the future."

The western half of New Guinea, however, along with a significant portion of the island's total population, has been seized by Indonesia. Indonesians generally have a condescending view of Melanesians and consider them their racial inferiors. Under Indonesian rule since 1963, the Melanesians of New Guinea, known as Kanaks, want their island to become an independent country run by and for Melanesians. Their struggle continues.

 

ROOTS OF THE DALITS:

INDIA'S BLACK UNTOUCHABLES

DR. CHEIKH ANTA DIOP AND THE CULTURAL

ROOTS OF THE DALITS: INDIA'S BLACK UNTOUCHABLES

By V.T. RAJSHEKAR

 

It is not
generally appreciated that Blacks live all over the world, comprising the
world's largest oppressed group. That Asia has a large Black population is also
not well known. Indian Blacks themselves are not aware of this fact. Lately, a
strong Black identity has emerged and the slogan, "Black is beautiful" is
catching up fast, at least among militant Blacks. Such a feeling is putting
pride back into the broken hearts of Black natives, also uniting them with the
struggle of their Black comrades in Africa and elsewhere. The Black liberation
struggle against white racism, inequality and male domination is an
international struggle.

A distinguished Black physicist, historian and linguist, Dr.
Cheikh Anta Diop was among the first to establish that Egypt was the world's
first civilization and that it was Black. He showed that humanity originated in
Africa, and that the first human being, the first person, was Black. The Blacks
migrated from Africa to other parts of the world. The Blacks are also the
ancestors of Indian Untouchables (Dalits). That is why the Blacks wherever they
are, belong to one single family. Hence, the relevance of Diop's work, for
India's Black Indus Valley Civilization is now widely accepted.

Diop's discoveries, therefore, establish that India's Black
Untouchables (with their African origin) are the ancestors of all humankind.
Hence, they have to be proud of their Black Untouchable origin and their
glorious cultural past. The whole world owes its origin to Black people--our
people. African history laid the foundation of world history.

Collective historical consciousness is a means of survival.
If India's Black Untouchables are today hiding their identity, ashamed to own
their origin and admit that they are Untouchables, it is because they are not
aware of their glorious past. Diop says that the Blacks can regain their
personality, can become proud of their past if they are told "who they are," and
"what they are." That means we have to discover our roots, our goddesses, our
religion, our ancestors, our history.

Cheikh Anta Diop has proven that the core of our problem is
cultural rootlessness. The most important task facing us, therefore, is to
reconstruct the links that tie us as communities. Humanity was born and
developed in Africa. The first human was Black, and Black is beautiful. The
Blacks lost their historical memory because we were fed by false history books.
The rule of oppression will soon end with the reconstruction of world history,
taking the aid of the tools provided to us by authorities like Diop, Runoko
Rashidi, and Ivan Van Sertima--all world famous Black scholars.

 

Dravidian journalist V.T. Rajshekar is the
editor of Dalit Voice: The Voice of the Persecuted Nationalities Denied
Human Rights
. He is the author of more than twenty-five books and is
widely traveled internationally.

.News: As a United Nations conference on racism gets underway, India's untouchables are taking their civil-rights demands to the international stage.

By Carla Power

Last year, in a one-room schoolhouse in the southern Indian state of Karnataka, under the watchful eyes of four elderly polling agents and posters of Shiva and Jesus, voters made history. Ramesh K, the first Dalit ever to run for a slot on the local council, won with 50 percent of the vote. His victory was echoed in local elections across the district, with Dalits, the social group formerly known as "untouchables," capturing more than 300 seats. "The election was as hot as when Sonia Gandhi ran in Delhi," laughed one villager. "It was the talk of the town." It was also the latest victory for a growing Dalit civil-rights movement that is challenging India's ancient social order.
For thousands of years, the Hindu caste system has functioned as a religiously sanctioned form of segregation; Brahmins, or the priestly caste, were at the top, followed by warriors, traders, laborers, and Dalits. India's 1950 constitution outlawed the notion of "untouchability" and established special quotas for Dalits in education and government jobs. In the decades since, a successful Dalit elite has emerged: India's president, K.R. Narayanan, is a Dalit.
But in rural areas, where the majority of India's population lives, caste discrimination still flourishes. Dalits are expected to take menial jobs like cleaning latrines or burying the dead. Most live in extreme poverty and are denied land and decent jobs. "Caste feeling is so embedded in people that they accept it as normal," says Theodore Sathyanandan, coordinator of the Christian Dalit Liberation Movement. "It's new for Dalits to be fighting back."
The Dalit movement has gained momentum by using tactics drawn from the South African struggle against apartheid and the US civil-rights movement. In cities and towns, activists have stormed local tea shops using the "two cup" system, which prohibits Dalits from using the cups reserved for people from higher castes. In Tamil Nadu, the Dalit Panthers, an organization modeled on the Black Panthers, has begun contesting parliamentary elections.
Now, Dalit organizations are building connections overseas. Along with Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch, they are working to raise the profile of "casteism" at the United Nations' World Conference Against Racism in August. Their argument: Casteism is illegal under a U.N. convention that bans racial discrimination. (Human Rights Watch has just released a report on the issue.)
But the Dalit movement faces a backlash from Hindu nationalists. The National Campaign on Dalit Human Rights has recorded an increase in hate crimes against Dalits; at a public hearing last year, the group publicized cases ranging from the demolition of Dalit homes to the torturing of a Dalit man who had married a higher-caste woman. And Jaswant Singh, India's external affairs minister, has spoken out against the efforts to get caste discrimination included in the U.N. meeting, criticizing what he calls "an attempt to dilute the focus of this conference."
Activists are not surprised at the government's stance. "For a long time, South Africa also resisted international intervention into its regime of apartheid," says Smita Narula, author of a recent Human Rights Watch report on caste violence. "It's time for India's apartheid to be dismantled."

 

 

The Color of Man:
It is generally conceded in most scholarly circles, that mankind originated in Africa. This makes the African man the father, and the African woman the mother of mankind.
By necessity, the earliest people were ethnically homogeneous and Negroid. Gloger's Law, which would also appear to be applicable to human beings, lays it down that warm-blooded animals evolving in a warm humid climate will secrete a black pigment (eumelanin). Hence, if mankind originated in the tropics around the latitude of the great lakes, he was bound to have brown pigmentation from the start and it was by differentiation in other climates that the original stock later split into different races.

According to Cheikh Anta Diop, "the color black acts as a protection of the organism. If man was first born in Africa and had not been black, he would not have survived. We know scientifically, that ultra-violet rays would have destroyed the human organism in the equatorial regions, if the organism had not been protected by black pigmentation, that is Melanin. That is obviously why man, first born in Africa was black. It is not something we need to be proud of, it is simply a fact."

The oldest known fossil remains, according to Dr. Louis Leakey, were found in the Olduvai Gorge region in Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania. These first "small" people were known as the "Twa", who worshipped the God Bes, a primitive human form of Horus I, being the earliest form of Ptah—the God of Gods.

We also find this same black God, Ptah, symbolized in the mystery system in Egypt. The Twa are said to have migrated the four thousand one hundred miles of the Nile river, establishing what was later to become the Egyptian civilization.

According to Manetho, the first dynasty was established by Menes (or Narmer), about 5500 B.C., when Menes conquered Lower Egypt, combining both Upper and Lower Egypt. This alliance of the red and white crowns of the two countries were joined, and Menes inherited the double diadem, becoming the first Pharaoh of the world.

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AN EXAMINATION AND REVIEW OF THE AFRICAN PRESENCE IN CLASSIC:

An abstract by
RUNOKO RASHIDI


The story of the African presence in early Asia is as fascinating as it is obscure. We now know, based on recent scientific studies of DNA, that modern humanity originated in Africa, that African people are the world's original people, and that all modern humans can ultimately trace their ancestral roots back to Africa. Were it not for the primordial migrations of early African people, humanity would have remained physically Africoid, and the rest of the world outside of the African continent absent of human life. Since the first modern humans in Asia were of African birth, the African presence in ancient Asia can therefore be demonstrated through the history of the Black populations that have inhabited the Asian land mass within the span of modern humanity. But not only were African people the first inhabitants of Asia. There is abundant evidence to show that Black people within documented historical periods created, nurtured or influenced some of ancient Asia's most important and enduring classical civilizations. This includes the Sumerian civilization of early Iraq, the Indus Valley civilization and the civilizations of Angkor and Champa in Southeast Asia.

For well over a century, Western historians, ethnologists, anthropologists, archaeologists and other such specialists have generally and often arbitrarily used such terms as Negroid, Proto-Negroid, Proto-Australoid, Negritic and Negrito in labeling populations in Asia with Africoid phenotypes and African cultural traits and historical traditions. The has especially been the case with Black populations in South Asia, Southeast Asia and Far East Asia. In Southwest Asia, on the other hand, terms like Hamites, Eurafricans, Mediterraneans and the Brown Race have commonly been employed in denoting clearly discernible Black populations. In this work, we have chosen to reject such deliberately confusing nomenclature as obsolete and invalid, unscientific and racially motivated, and it is our intention to comprehensively explore the full impact and extent of the African presence in the human cultures and classical civilizations of early Asia.

In summation, in brief, we contend that the history of the African presence in Asia, including the African presence in classical Asian civilization, is one of the most significant, challenging and least written about aspects of the global African experience, and that even today, after an entire series of holocausts and calamities, the African presence in Asia may exceed three hundred million people. The works of historians and scholars like W.E.B. DuBois, Drusilla Dunjee Houston, Joel A. Rogers, John G. Jackson, Cheikh Anta Diop, Chancellor James Williams and others have stressed this for years. We intend to continue to energetically carry this work forward.

 

SIR MORIEN:
BLACK KNIGHT OF THE EUROPEAN MIDDLE AGES

By RUNOKO RASHIDI

DEDICATED TO DR. PATRICIA MPATA MC GRAW
Few documents portray the ethnicity of the Moors in medieval Europe with more passion, boldness and clarity than the epic of Morien. Morien is a metrical romance rendered into English prose from the medieval Dutch version of the Lancelot. In the Lancelot, it occupies more than five thousand lines and forms the ending of the first extant volume of that compilation. Neither the date of the original poem or the name of the author is known. The Dutch manuscript is dated to the beginning of the fourteenth century. The whole work is a translation, and apparently a very faithful translation, of a French original. It is quite clear that the Dutch compiler understood his text well, and though possibly somewhat fettered by the requirement of turning prose into verse, he renders it with uncommon fidelity.

Morien is the adventure of a splendidly heroic Moorish knight (possibly a Christian convert) supposed to have lived during the days of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table. Sir Morien is described as follows: "He was all black, even as I tell ye: his head, his body, and his hands were all black, saving only his teeth. His shield and his armour were even those of a Moor, and black as a raven."

Initially in the adventure Morien is simply called "the Moor." He first challenges, then battles, and finally wins the unqualified respect and admiration of Sir Lancelot. In addition, Morien is extremely forthright and articulate. Sir Gawain, whose life was saved on the battlefield by Sir Morien, is stated to have "harkened, and smiled at the black knight's speech." It is noted that Morien was as "black as pitch; that was the fashion of his land--Moors are black as burnt brands." And again: "His teeth were white as chalk, otherwise was he altogether black." "Morien, who was black of face and limb," was a great warrior, and it is said that: "His blows were so mighty; did a spear fly towards him, to harm him, it troubled him no whit, but he smote it in twain as if it were a reed; naught might endure before him." Ultimately, and ironically, Sir Morien came to personify all of the finest virtues of the knights of the European Middle Ages.

As a sort of concluding note, the English ethnologist and antiquarian scholar Gerald Massey (writing in 1881 in his massive two-volume text, A Book of the Beginnings) noted that, "Morion is said to have been the architect of Stonehenge.... Now, as a negro is still known as a Morien in English, may not this indicate that Morien belonged to the Black race, the Kushite builders?" It should be further added, according to Dr. Jack Forbes in his scholarly work Black Africans and Native Americans, "that for a very long period the Dutch language used Moor and Moriaan for Black Africans." Among the Lorma community in modern Liberia, the name Moryan is still prominent.

 

The Slave Who Defeated Napoleon:
by Jennifer Brainard

Napoleon was one of the greatest generals who ever lived. But at the end of the 18th century a self-educated slave with no military training drove Napoleon out of Haiti and led his country to independence. The remarkable leader of this slave revolt was Toussaint Breda (later called Toussaint L'Ouverture, and sometimes the "black Napoleon"). Slave revolts from this time normally ended in executions and failure – this story is the exception.

It began in 1791 in the French colony of Saint Dominique (later Haiti). Though born a slave in Saint Dominique, Toussaint learned of Africa from his father, who had been born a free man there. He learned that he was more than a slave, that he was a man with brains and dignity. He was fortunate in having a liberal master who had him trained as a house servant and allowed him to learn to read and write. Toussaint took full advantage of this, reading every book he could get his hands on. He particularly admired the writings of the French Enlightenment philosophers, who spoke of individual rights and equality.

In 1789 the French Revolution rocked France. The sugar plantations of Saint Dominique, though far away, would never be the same. Spurred on by such Enlightenment thinkers as Jean-Jacques Rousseau, the early moderate revolutionaries considered seriously the question of slavery. Those moderate revolutionaries were not willing to end slavery but they did apply the "Rights of Man" to all Frenchmen, including free blacks and mulattoes (those of mixed race). Plantation owners in the colonies were furious and fought the measure. Finally the revolutionaries gave in and retracted the measure in 1791.

The news of this betrayal triggered mass slave revolts in Saint Dominique, and Toussaint became the leader of the slave rebellion. He became known as Toussaint L'Ouverture (the one who finds an opening) and brilliantly led his rag-tag slave army. He successfully fought the French (who helped by succumbing to yellow fever in large numbers) as well as invading Spanish and British.

By 1793, the revolution in France was in the hands of the Jacobins, the most radical of the revolutionary groups. This group, led by Maximilian Robespierre, was responsible for the Reign of Terror, a campaign to rid France of "enemies of the revolution." Though the Jacobins brought indiscriminate death to France, they were also idealists who wanted to take the revolution as far as it could go. So they again considered the issue of "equality" and voted to end slavery in the French colonies, including what was now known as Haiti.

There was jubilation among the blacks in Haiti, and Toussaint agreed to help the French army eject the British and Spanish. Toussaint proved to be a brilliant general, winning 7 battles in 7 days. He became a defacto governor of the colony.

In France the Jacobins lost power. People finally tired of blood flowing in the streets and sent Maximilian Robespierre, the leader of the Jacobins, to the guillotine, ending the Reign of Terror. A reaction set in. The French people wanted to get back to business. More moderate leaders came and went, eventually replaced by Napoleon, who ruled France with dictatorial powers. He responded to the pleas of the plantation owners by reinstating slavery in the French colonies, once again plunging Haiti into war.

By 1803 Napoleon was ready to get Haiti off his back: he and Toussaint agreed to terms of peace. Napoleon agreed to recognize Haitian independence and Toussaint agreed to retire from public life. A few months later, the French invited Toussaint to come to a negotiating meeting will full safe conduct. When he arrived, the French (at Napoleon's orders) betrayed the safe conduct and arrested him, putting him on a ship headed for France. Napoleon ordered that Toussaint be placed in a prison dungeon in the mountains, and murdered by means of cold, starvation, and neglect. Toussaint died in prison, but others carried on the fight for freedom.

Six months later, Napoleon decided to give up his possessions in the New World. He was busy in Europe and these far-away possessions were more trouble than they were worth. He abandoned Haiti to independence and sold the French territory in North America to the United States (the Louisiana purchase).

Years later, in exile at St. Helena, when asked about his dishonorable treatment of Toussaint, Napoleon merely remarked, "What could the death of one wretched Negro mean to me?"

 

Moors and Arabs:
by Yvonne Clark


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When the Romans entered West Africa in 46 B.C., they saw Africans and called them Maures, from the Greek adjective Mauros, meaning dark or black. It is from Mauros and the Latin term Marues that the word Moor is derived. Since the inhabitants of North Africa were black, the Romans and later the Europeans called them Moors. It is no coincidence that the land inhabited by the Moors was called Mauritania and Morocco, meaning "Land of the Blacks."

In the beginning of the seventh century, the Arab prophet, Muhammad, began to preach the word of Islam. Consumed with religious fervor, the Arabs sought to spread Islam and conquer the world. By 708, the Arabs had overrun North Africa. Consequently, Moors in large numbers accepted Arabic as the national language and converted to their conqueror's religion, Islam. Interestingly, hundreds of years later, Africans who had been enslaved by Europeans would again convert to their conqueror's religion, Christianity.

After the fall of the Roman Empire (fifth century), Spain was held by a barbaric white tribe, the Visigoths. Though they were Christians, their brand of Christianity was cruel and unjust. For this reason, Spain's Jews, serfs, and slaves looked favorably upon the arrival of a new civilization in which they would be able to live free of persecution.

Tarik, a great African chief, was given the rank of general in the Arab army and sent to raid Spain. On April 30, 711, Tarik landed on the Spanish Coast with 7,000 troops. His troops consisted of 300 Arabs and 6,700 native Africans (Moors). An ancient source, Ibn Husayn (ca. 950, recorded that these troops were "Sudanese", an Arabic word for Black people.

The Moors were unstoppable, and Visigothic Spain ceased to be. The few resisting Visigoths fled to the caves of the Cantabrian Mountains. Later in the century, the cave dwellers would venture out of the Cantabrian Mountains and reclaim parts of northern Spain.

The Moors of Africa were the real conquerors. When the Arabs arrived, the hardest part of the job had been done. Instead of treating the Moors fairly, the Arab chiefs assigned themselves the most fertile regions. The dissatisfied Moors were not long in coming to blows with the Arabs. (The History of Spain by Louis Bertrand and Sir Charles Petrie - published by Eyre & Spottiswood, London, 1945, page 36). Ultimately, the Moors acquired two-thirds of the peninsula, which they named Al-Andulus.

Al -Andulus was obliged to pay tribute to the Arab Caliph (King) of Damascus. As Al-Andulus acquired its own identity, its bond with the Caliph began to weaken. In 756, Al-Andulus proclaimed itself an independent state. Thus, its only links to the Arabs would be the Islamic faith and the Arabic language.
The Moorish architectural remains in Cordoba, Seville, and Granada prove conclusively that these cities were more prosperous and artistically more brilliant than any Christian cities in Europe at the time. The Moors of Al-Andulus held the torch of leaning and civilization when the rest of Europe was plunged in barbaric ignorance.

If Moorish Spain had been an accomplishment of the Arabs it would have been called Arab or Arabic Spain. Instead it bears the name of its creators, the Moors, i.e., Moorish Spain. Moorish culture was black in origin, bright in Achievement, and powerful in its influence on the rest of Europe.


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Yvonne Clark is a researcher and public lecturer currently residing in Los Angeles, California. She had recently returned from an educational tour of Bahia, Brazil, and has done extensive research on Moorish Spain. Ms. Clark may be contacted at ycclark@earthlink.net

 

 

Hannibal of Carthage: (247-183 B.C.)

Hannibal is said to be the greatest military leader and strategist of all time. Hannibal was born in 247 B.C., when Carthage, then the maritime power, was beginning to decline. The Carthaginians were descendants of the Phoenicians, who were great Black merchants. They traded with India and the people of the Mediterranean, and the Scilly Isles.
When very young, Hannibal accompanied Hamilclar, his father in a battle with the Romans. Seventeen years later, he succeeded his father and became supreme commander of the peninsula. Hannibal had 80,000 infantry, 12,000 cavalry, and 40 African war elephants. He conquered major portions of Spain and France, and all of Italy, except for Rome.

Hannibal marched his army and war elephants through the Alps to surprise and conquer his enemies. In one battle, the Romans put 80,000 men on the field to defeat Hannibal, led by Scipio. When Scipio attacked with his entire army, Hannibal had so studied the grounds and arranged his men so that they surrounded the Romans. He then turned his armored war elephants loose and trampled them. Behind them, he sent his African swordsmen to complete the slaughter.

In another battle, Rome sent 90,000 men led by Varro and Emilius. With only 50,000 men, knowing he could not win by using his main force, Hannibal placed the weakest part of his army in the center, contrary to the best military rules. With his veterans and cavalry on both wings, the Romans struck them in full center as Hannibal had anticipated. When they were sure of victory by overcoming the center, Hannibal's flank closed in and killed 70,000 men, 80 senators and Emilius.

Hannibal later went on to become a statesman of Carthage, and later took his own life, rather than surrender to Rome.

 

The Blacks of India:

(Sudroids/Indo-Negroids, Indo-Negroids) are related to Blacks in Africa in every way.

(See more at www.dalitstan.org/books/sudroid ) In ancient times there was physical travel back and forth between Africa and India. In fact that connection remains today and it is one that is found in race, features, complexion, language, customs. In fact, Drusilla Dunjee Houstion pointed out way back in 1925 before genetics was as advanced as today, that not only are the Black populations of India Negroid and racially related to Africans, but that some of the light-skinned "Mediterranean" featured people of India (those shown on Indian television as who Indians are, are physically structured after the Negro pattern down to the shape of their skulls.

The parent race in India still exists today. They are a group of dimunitive (short statured) Negro people who live in the Andaman Islands and Nicobar Islands. In fact that group was recently found due to genetic testing to be related to the Pygmies of Central Africa. This group of Negroids are found from West Africa to the Philipines and legends place them in the forests of Europe, Ireland and as far west as the Americas in ancient times. (Anyone from Africa, the Americas, Europe, India, Melanesia or anywhere else who wants to research or study the ancient and present Black population of the ancient Americas, Africa, South Asia, Melanesia and SE Asia, see these books for more information see also "Men Out of Asia," by C.S. Gladwin, 1940's) also see more references from the book, "Susu Economics," published by www.AuthorHouse.com
also see "African Presence in Early Asia," edt. by Runoko Rashidi and Ivan Van Sertima. See also
"A History of the African-Olmecs," published by www.Authorhouse.com  )  
also see http://www.cwo.com/~lucumi/runoko.html  

The Black Sudroid, Indo-Negroid or Negro-Australoid population of India is about 600 million including 300 million Black Untouchables or Dalits and 300 million Tribals. Most Negro type Blacks in India live in South India and the Eastern regions.

The point has been made based on fact that a person who is brown-skinned, has Negroid features, straight hair and is said to be some other "race" is in fact part of the Negro/Black race. This conclusion is based on the most recent findings done by genetics and other means.

Here are the facts:

A person of Felahim origins in Egypt with light brown skin and curly to straight hair but with Negroid features is STILL NEGROID AND BELONGS TO THE BLACK RACE.

A person from Northern India with black or brown skin, Negro features, straight hair is still NEGROID AND BELONGS TO THE BLACK RACE.

The term used for these groups is "Mediterranean" yet, genetics and facial features show them to be a mixed race that clusters towards the Negro/Black race of Mankind.

According to Scientific American magazine, about 75 percent of the European population has a chromosome (alu) found in 95 percent of Africans. About 60 percent of Asians have that Alu as well.
This shows that three quarters of people called European have Negro genes.

In the case of people of Southern Europe, Northern and Central India (those we see on Indian Television), the Germans, Russians, Swedes, Anglo-Saxons who are more distinctly Caucasian/white consider them to be a branch of the Black race. This conclusion has been made for hundreds of years and long before there was any genetic proof to add to that conclusion.

Hence since the Negro-Black race is the original race and all race came from the Black race, a person who has more Negro/African or (tropical) characteristics (full lips, platerrhine nose, dolicephalic head, strong/thick bone structure, kinky to straight hair, yellowish-brown to blue-black skins, original languages that came from the prehistoric Sahara Civilizations (about 30,000 years ago and includes the Dravidian, Melanesian, Australian, Ainu, some American Indian languages, the Afro-Asiatic languages (Arabic, Hebrew, Ethiopic, Aramaic)....THESE PEOPLE ARE STILL NEGROID.

THE RACIST IMPERIALIST CONSTRUCT

The sad reason why many Negroid/Africoid peoples in Asia, the Middle East and elsewhere do not or are confused as to their origins has to do with the ancient "Aryan" colonial influence and the modern European/British race and colonial influence.

For example, the Belgiums, French and British were successful in convincing the Tutsis and Hutus that they were different "races" and one was more white, while the other not. Hence they are said to have treated the Tutsis better because they thought the Tutsis are more "Caucasoid." This racist paradigm led to disaster in Rwanda over the last 100 years among people who led a basically peaceful life.

This racist trend is also found in Latin America, India, Australia, the US, Caribbean, Africa and elsewhere. People who are Negroid/Black ARE BEING DIVIDED WITH THE USE OF RELIGION IN PLACES LIKE INDIA, SUDAN AND ELSEWHERE INTO IDEAS THAT ARE FOREIGN.

Movies that show light-skinned north Indians against dark-skinned Indo-Negroids in some Indian movies clearly show this old imperialistic 'Aryan" or British model of "divide and conquer" and racism.

In Black America, this trick is being tried with music videos that emphasize "yellow" skinned Negro/Black women over dark-skinned African-Americans. Fortunately, due to the hightly nationalistic mentality and resurging pride in leaning towards Black purity and Africanness of many Black Americans, this trick is constantly criticized in the US by Blacks. However action needs to be taken on a global scale to emphasize intelligence, history and contributions over skin tone and sharpness of nose or having no lips or hair texture.

George Carver who invented hundreds of products out of the potato was a distinct Black Negro. His contributions to the world is thousands of times greater than a half-Black "mulatto" or "multiracial" actor or actoress who has done nothing for humanity. Martin Luther King had the 100 percent Negroid/Negro features found among West Africans and Blacks in Southern Africa. He was not a "high-yellow" Negro but medium to dark. His skin color or complexion and that of any human does not "think" like the brain with its grey matter and had nothing to do with how his mind worked during the processing of information, knowledge and data. Yet, on the other hand, the melanin of the skin is also found in the brain and also helps and has helped the Black race develop spiritually, socially, culturally and technologically before others. In fact having Black skin and being melanated (BLACK SKIN) is a positive that PaPa Koffi clearly outlined in one issue of Dalit Voice (1997). In nature sees Black skin and melanin as a positive attribute, (Ned-ger, Net-cher...believe it or not, the word "Negro, Naga, Nig...r, came from the Egyptian word for "God," which is "Net-cher or Net-cher."

 

The Influence of the Moors in Spain and Portugal:
by Edward Vivian Scobie

The same degree of intellect and learning was brought by the Moorish conquerors of the Iberian peninsula to Portugal. Like Spain, that country was to be culturally influenced by the Moors. Its association with Africa dates as far back as the fourth and fifth centuries when Africans arrived in southern Europe. But it was in 711 A.D. that they marched in as conquerors under the command of Tarik. To reinforce what has been said earlier these Moors, as the early writers chronicled, were "black or dark people, some being very black."

After the invasion of 711 came other waves of Moors even darker. It was this occupation of Portugal which accounts for the fact that even noble families had absorbed the blood of the Moor.

From that time onwards, racial mixing in Portugal, as in Spain, and elsewhere in Europe which came under the influence of Moors, took place on a large scale. That is why historians claim that "Portugal is in reality a Negroid land," and that when Napoleon explained that "Africa begins at the Pyrenees," he meant every word that he uttered. Even the world-famed shrine in Portugal, Fatima, where Catholic pilgrims from all over the world go in search of miracle cures for their afflictions, owes its origin to the Moors. The story goes that a Portuguese nobleman was so saddened by the death of his wife, a young Moorish beauty whom he had married after her conversion to the Christian faith, that he gave up his title and fortune and entered a monastery. His wife was buried on a high plateau called Sierra de Aire. It is from there that the name of Fatima is derived.

The Moors ruled and occupied Lisbon and the rest of the country until well into the twelfth century. They were finally defeated and driven out by the forces of King Alfonso Henriques, who was aided by English and Flemish crusaders. The scene of this battle was the Castelo de Sao Jorge or, in English, the Castle of St. George. Today, it still stands, overlooking the city of "Lashbuna"--as the Moors named Lisbon.

The defeat of the Moors did not put an end to their influence on Portugal. The African (Moorish) presence can be seen everywhere in Portugal; in the architecture of many of the buildings. They still retain their Moorish design--like the Praca De Toiros--the Bull Ring in Lisbon. A walk through Alfama--the oldest quarter in Lisbon, with its fifteenth century houses, narrow-winding streets--dates back to the time when it was the last settlement of the Moors. Fado singers abound in all corners and bistros of Afalma. Their songs and rhythms owe much to the influence of the Moorish musicians centuries ago. Even the fishing boats on the beaches of Cascais show marked African traces. Called the rabelos, these boats, with their large red or white sails, which also ply on the Douro River to fetch wine from the upper valleys, are reminiscent of the transport boats of Lagos in Nigeria.

more info: The Moors in Spain and Portugal (Hardcover)
by Jan Read or Nature Knows No Color-Line
by J. A. Rogers Sex and Race: Negro-Caucasian Mixing in All Ages and All Lands : The Old World (Hardcover)

Artwork by Earthwoman@SmashMouthEducation
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We Ain't Taking It Back. March 2005.Album

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Artwork by Earthwoman@SmashMouthEducation
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Its' Named Respect. April 2005 Album

The Moorish Science Temple:

(AN ALL RIGHT DEFINITION) :

The Moorish Science Temple of America is a religion founded in the early 20th century claiming to be a sect of Islam, but having equal influences in Buddhism, Christianity, Freemasonry, Gnosticism and Taoism. Its main tenet was that African Americans were descended from the Moors and thus were originally Islamic. Its founder was Noble Drew Ali, the Prophet né Timothy Drew, whose disciples included Wallace Fard Muhammad, founder of the Nation of Islam, and Elijah Muhammad, who was Fard's successor and who later employed Malcolm X as the mouthpiece of the Nation.

Timothy Drew's beginnings
Timothy Drew was born in 1886 in North Carolina. The accounts of Timothy Drew's childhood are varied, from him being the son of two former slaves who was adopted by a tribe of Cherokee Indians, to him being the son of a Moroccan Muslim father and a Cherokee mother. He is recorded, perhaps apocryphally, as saying, "When I was born, it turned black dark in the daytime. The people put their hoes down and came out of the fields." Allegedly, at the age of 16, he joined a circus and became a stage magician, befriending a band of Roma, whom he traveled the world with. Supposedly during these travels, he met the high priest of an Egyptian cult of magic. In one version of Drew's biography, the cult leader saw him as a reincarnation of the founder of the cult, while in others he considered him a reincarnation of Jesus Christ. The magician trained him in mysticism, and bestowed upon him a lost version of the Qur'an. This text came to be known as the Holy Koran of the Moorish Science Temple of America, and is referred to as the "uniting of the Holy Koran of Mecca." Sometimes the title is shorthanded as the Circle Seven Koran, because of the design on its cover, namely a red numeral seven surrounded by a blue circle broken into four segments. Drew changed his name to "Noble Drew Ali, the Prophet" and returned to the United States where he founded the religion in 1913 in Newark, New Jersey.

[edit]
The church's teachings
The Koran is held to be a collection of knowledge kept secret by the peoples of the East, now brought back to light by the Prophet. As such, Noble Drew Ali did not claim to be the author of the work, per se, although the final section of the Koran, Chapters 45-48, are in his proverbial hand. The Koran is in three major sections. Chapters 2-19 contain the lost history of Jesus as a child and young man, His travels and teachings in Palestine, Egypt, Europe, and India. The ministry of John the Baptist is also figures heavily in this section. The most probable source for this material is the Aquarian Gospel of Jesus Christ, although the man credited with this work, Levi H. Dowling, as in the case of Noble Drew Ali, did not claim authorship, but rather suggests that it is a revealed, pre-existing text. The second major section of the Koran, Chapters 20-44, seems to be derived from the Rosicrucian text Unto Thee I Grant, and consists largely of discussions of various aspects of the human condition. The third and final section, apparently penned by Noble Drew Ali, himself, contains a collection of non-traditional histories of Asiatic peoples and the founding of Christianity, as well as an overview of the mission and intent of the Science Temple. In addition to these three sections, Chapter 1 serves as a sort of Creation story, a discussion of the fundamental nature of humans, how we came into being, and what our relationship to God is. There is also a quick epilogue between Chapters 19 and 20, summing up the events portrayed in the first section as the story of the lives of Jesus and John the Baptist.

A major theme of the Moorish Science Temple is teaching or returning nationality to members of the Asiatic Nation of North America. The Science Temple was an early proponent of the Black Power movement in America, although Marcus Garvey is celebrated by the Science Temple as the Forerunner of the Prophet. The temple's doctrine was that of racial tolerance and equality, and the structure of the religion theoretically embraced all races. Drew taught that Moors were "Asiatic", that there are only two races on the planet, Europeans and Asiatics. The peoples of Asia, Africa, and the Pacific, as well as Latin Americans, and indigenous peoples of the Americas are all considered Asiatic in Science Temple teachings. Drew taught that Europeans represent the "Lower Self" (Satan), and were driven out of Mecca by the Asiatic Moslems. Drew said that the empowerment of the Moorish people could only be found through an acceptance of Islam, although the Moorish Science Temple's definition of Islam was very different from the conventional one, and was more of a theosophistic combination of many religions, including Buddhism and indigenous religions. The theology of the church was lenient and inconsistent, if not non-existent, but there were consistent themes of universal love and racial pride. Doctrine of the temple was unconventional, including stories about Christ and Apollo battling, and the Greek Gods watching over his tomb before his resurrection, as well as teachings such as that Morocco was in fact the promised land of the Bible and Koran and that descendents of Sub-Saharan Africans should be referred to as "Moors" or "Moorish Americans" instead of Negroes, Ethiopians, Blacks, or today, African-Americans.

[edit]
The church's practices
The Moorish Science temple was founded on a blueprint of Freemasonry, including a modified version of the Masonic lodge charter. The church's standards of behaviour was loosely derived from those of Islam, although not rigorously, and critics of the church accused it of antinomianism. Members of the Temple wore fezes, (including Drew, who wore a Cherokee feather in his) and often added the suffixes "-Bey" or "-El" to their names to signify their Moorish heritage, and could. The ushers of the Temple wore black fezzes and were known as "Muftis", and the leader of a particular temple was known as a "Sheik", "Sheikess", or "Governor". Followers of the temple refused to fight in World War I and due to the pressure of the inhabitants of New Jersey due to racism, they moved to Chicago, where Drew began to make more impassioned speeches, urging Moors to reject the white-man's labels such as "black" and "colored" and for Americans of all races to reject hate and embrace love. He believed that Chicago would become a second Mecca, and the temple began selling folk remedies (such as Moorish Tea) and issuing members of the church membership cards authorizing them as "Moslems" and declaring that they are citizens of the United States.

[edit]
The Science Temple after the death of Noble Drew Ali
The church suffered scrutiny and possibly harassment by Chicago police. A member of the Temple, Claude Green El, splintered off, declaring himself Grand Sheik, taking a number of members of the original temple, but was later stabbed by unknown parties. Drew was arrested and beaten by police, and released on bond pending an indictment. He died shortly afterward, apparently due to injuries received at the hands of the police, although the exact circumstances of his death are unknown. He was never brought up on charges for any involvement in the stabbing of Claude Green El.

The Moorish Science Temple lived on after Drew Ali’s death, but splits among the Temple adherents widened. Three factions eventually formed, all led by close associates of the Prophet. Bro C. Kirkman-Bey, the Prophet’s translator and confidant, became the head of what would eventually be the largest group, and which currently has legal claim to the name "Moorish Science Temple of America, Inc." Another faction developed into the so-called Reincarnated Temples, led by the Prophet’s former chauffeur Bro. J. Givens El, who thereafter called himself "Noble Drew Ali, Reincarnated." Givens El, and the brothers Richardson Dingle El and Timothy Dingle El who succeeded him, taught that the Prophethood of Noble Drew Ali remained intact and passed on to them at the death of each before them, similar to the succession of authority from father to son or grandson in Shia Isma’ili Islam. A third faction was begun by Bro. E. Mealy El and is still in existence, but with probably the fewest adherents out of the three.

During World War II, the Science Temple (specifically the Kirkman-Bey faction) got the attention of the FBI, who falsely suspected the Moors of collaborating with the Japanese. No doubt doctrines and prophecies that the world order would one day invert and put the Asiatics of the world back in charge, as was, the Temple taught, the original order of things, sounded woefully suspicious to the anti-Japanese mindset of the times. The FBI created a file on the organization which grew to 3,117 pages, but produced no evidence of any connection or even much sympathy between the Empire of Japan and the Temple.

Although it continues to this day, the MST is overshadowed historically by The Nation of Islam, begun by W.D. Fard, as mentioned above. Over time some Science Temple members have converted to either traditional Islam or the Nation of Islam. These MST to NOI converts include one Dr. Rashid, who eventually gained infamy by his links to Al-Qaeda. The number of people who consider themselves to be members of the Science Temple or other, later Moorish groups, has apparently remained steady, if somewhat small, over the decades since the inevitable decline in membership after the death of the Prophet. As with the Nation of Islam, a major source of converts to the Science Temple has been the often disgruntled and uneducated African American populations incarcerated in federal and state penitentiaries. The so-called Kirkman-Bey body of the MST, currently administered by Bro. R. Jones-Bey, Grand Sheik and Moderator, and Sister S. Dunbar-Bey, Assistant Grand Sheikess, has been particularly successful in the prisons.

Moorish Science has had a heavy influence upon spiritualist anarchism via Hakim Bey, as well as through various subsequent religious movements, such as the Nation of Gods and Earths, Dwight York's Nuwaubian movement, and the Moorish Orthodox Church.

Though Hakim Bey and the "Moorish Orthodox Church" has done much to introduce the history of the Temple to the general public, their writings have done some irreversible damage to scholarship. The MOC's account of the Temple is fraught with fiction and myth, including the idea that Celts were considered Persians and Asiatics (Drew privately taught that Europeans were the embodiment of Satan, or "the Lower Self", a teaching later publicly taught by the Nation of Islam). The true teachings and history of the MSTA are often obscured and confused by Hakim Bey's writing, even though their actual teachings are easily accessed on MSTA websites run by adherents of the Temple

 

 

Moorish Science Temple of America:

http://foia.fbi.gov/foiaindex/moortemp.htm

Virtually every religion has some sort of memorable origin story, something that explains why this particular religion is so much superior to all of the other options available to today's discriminating consumer.

Some stories are more memorable than others. Case in point: The Moorish Science Temple of America, which surpasses even Scientology and Thelema in sheer weirdness.

Moorish Science was established in 1913 by a man who was born with the name Timothy Drew. Moorish Science may have the distinction of being the only religion ever to be founded in Newark, NJ. Similar to Christian Science, Moorish Science has nothing to do with science, although it does have a lot to do with Moorishness.

The basic tenet of Moorish Science is that all black people are descended from the Moors, a nomadic North African tribe whose most famous member was Othello. The Moors were Islamic when they first invaded Spain in 711; thus Moorish Science teaches that all blacks are originally Islamic. "Islamic" is being used very loosely here, as most other Muslims would tell you. The actual creeds of Moorish Science draw nearly as much from Buddhism, Christianity and Freemasonry as they do from Islam.

If you're thinking that this premise is somewhat questionable, well, let's consider the historical record. Islam was founded in the 7th century A.D. Black people have been around since before the dawn of recorded history, which goes back to about 30,000 B.C. But logic has never been much of an obstacle to religion.

Timothy Drew was born in 1886 in North Carolina. According to some accounts, he was born to two former slaves, then adopted by a local tribe of Cherokee Indians. Another telling of the story says his father was a dark-skinned Cherokee himself. Yet another version of the tale says his father was Moroccan Muslim and his mother was the Cherokee. Drew himself said the moment of his birth was marked by an eclipse; others claimed an earthquake heralded his arrival on the scene.

Whatever his parentage, young Timothy apparently joined the circus as a stage magician at age 16 and/or hooked up with a band of Gypsies. Some or all of these characters took Drew on a world tour that would change his life.


The most fateful jaunte in Drew's alleged travels was to Egypt in the early 1900s. While there, he supposedly met the high priest of an ancient Egyptian magic cult. The priest saw Drew as the reincarnation of the cult's original leader from centuries ago (or so the story goes) and initiated Drew into the powerful magic rituals of yore.

The priest also imparted to Drew a "director's cut" version of the Koran, which became known as the Circle Seven Koran. The young circus performer rechristened himself "Noble Drew Ali, the Prophet" and returned to the U.S. to spread the good word.

The Circle Seven Koran was largely based on apocryphal Christian texts that said Jesus Christ, considered an important prophet by conventional Islam, traveled to India, where he lived most of his first thirty years, with side trips to Africa and Europe.

If you could wade through the florid language of the Noble Drew's writings, you would find that the church was generally oriented around a series of elaborate racial theories, leavened with a healthy dose of Masonic-style occultism.

The centerpiece of the Moorish Science church was an elaborate and scientifically dubious set of theories regarding racial origins. The religion was the first recognizable iteration of the Black Power movement in America, but the structure of the religion was accepting of all races. Drew rejected the appellation of "negro", and said that American blacks were properly referred to as Moors, or Moorish Americans. One of his disciples was Elijah Mohammed, the founder of the Nation of Islam.

Drew taught that the Moors were an "asiatic race", as were many whites, whom he identified as Celts or Persians. Although the Moorish Temple began as a primarily Moorish organization, Drew soon began to attract significant numbers of Persians, who were welcomed into the fold.

Although the Circle Seven Koran has some of the typical bad things you would expect about the Jews, the Moorish Temple was relatively silent on the issue. Despite the fact that the Temple was open to "Persians," the book was quite specific on the racial issues at play in the story of Christ's crucifixion:

Jesus himself was of the true blood of the ancient Canaanites and Moabites and the inhabitants of Africa. Seeking to redeem His people in those days from the pale skin nations of Europe, Rome crucified Him according to their law.

While this was one of the more openly controversial claims in the Circle Seven, the main thrust of the Temple's teachings had less to do with the evils of Jews and European whites than the origins of blacks. As Moors, Drew argued, all blacks were originally Muslims. (As were many whites whose race derived from the so-called asiatic strains.) Drew said that Moor empowerment could only be found through a return to Islam.

But Noble Drew's definition of Islam didn't bear much resemblance to what you might hear from a mullah at al-Azhar University. Drew taught that Morocco was the promised land of the Bible and the Koran, symbolizing a state of illuminated consciousness that was obtained through a hodge-podge of occultist and eastern mystical practices.

The combination of ideas was sort of a Moorish spin on the European trend of theosophism, a 19th century movement that believed all religions are basically describing the same thing in different words. Critics of the Temple leveled charges of antinomianism against the sect's members, but the allegations weren't any more true than the 500 previous times someone had used that word to describe a religion they didn't like.

He drew on Buddhism and indigenous religions to guide a practice that employed the terminology of Islam, but he structured the Moorish Temple on a Masonic blueprint, including a version of their charter and initiation procedures. A Moorish Temple charter was modeled after a Masonic lodge charter:

Jurisdiction aforesaid by virtue of whose authority it exists, while acting in conformity with the laws, rules and regulations of the Home Temple and the said subordinate Temple aforesaid, being duly and lawfully organized, constituted and established, is hereby authorized and empowered to initiate and confer the degrees of said Temple in accordance with the established forms and usages upon all such persons as are duly and lawfully qualified. To promote and practice the teachings of all the true and divine prophets: Jesus, Mohammed, Buddha, Confucius, Etc.

The officers and members who benefit under this charter, do hereby pledge themselves to act at all times in obedience to the commands and edicts of the illustrious Noble Drew Ali, the founder and head of the Moorish Holy Temple of Science, Inc.
The actual theology of the church was virtually non-existent, and what little there was had a tendency to drift alarmingly. Overall, the church was in favor of love and racial pride. Its metaphysical teachings sounded a lot more like Taoism than Islam.

"Man is a thought of Allah; all thoughts of Allah are infinite; they are not measured up by time, for things that are concerned with time begin and end. [...] But man, like every other thought of Allah, was but a seed, a seed that held within itself the potencies of Allah, just as the seed of any plant of earth holds deep within itself the attributes of every part of that especial plant."

Temple teachings about the life of Christ featured such non-standard biblical scenes as Jesus facing off against Apollo for the title of "undisputed legitimate god," with Jesus as the decisive victor. The Greek gods return later to watch over his tomb before the resurrection. Standards for behavior were generally modeled on Islam, but not rigorously, and disciples were expected to undertake a journey of self-exploration that had a decidedly gnostic flavor.

Members of the Moorish Temple were required to wear a fez; Noble Drew sported a Cherokee feather in his. They often added "Bey" or "-El" to their names, which was meant to signify Moorish descent, and members of the church could aspire to a variety of initiated titles such as Deacon, Exilarch or Papessa. The church used a flag that featured a variation of the Islamic crescent and star insignia.

The Moorish Temple and its followers refused to fight in World War I, but this was an age when the phrase "uppity negro" caused more trouble for the person it was directed at than the person who uttered it. More than 20 years before Rosa Parks, New Jersey didn't take kindly to all these Moors suddenly taking pride in their race and refusing to consider themselves second class citizens. Under intense pressure, the Moorish Temple decided it was time to move on.

Drew took the church to Chicago, where he had a stronger base of street-level support. In fiery speeches on the streets of the Windy City, he exhorted Moors to reject the white man's labels, such as negro, black and colored. The church did a brisk business in a variety of "Moorish" products, including various snake-oil style ointments, teas and other paraphernalia. He issued his followers "passports" to the Moorish Nation of America. He urged Americans of every color to reject hate and embrace love, proclaiming that Chicago would become the new Mecca.

As history has proven time and again, promoting love instead of hate is one of the most reliable ways to ensure an early death.


As the scrutiny of the Chicago police increased, the Moorish Church schismed when a member of the Temple, Claude Green, declared himself Grand Sheik and took a number of Noble Drew's followers along with him. The split quickly became extremely acrimonious, and a short time later, Green was stabbed to death by parties unknown.

Drew was arrested, beaten by police, and released on bond pending an indictment. A couple of weeks later, he died. The exact circumstances around his death are as unknown as those surrounding his birth. His body was buried in a Chicago graveyard.

After Drew's death, the Moorish Temple continued, but it had lost much of its fervor. The split among Drew's followers sharpened, and a series of gun battles and kidnappings erupted over the question of who would succeed him. One contender claimed to be the reincarnation of Noble Drew, a good trick since he was a fully grown adult when Drew died. Another claimed to hold Drew's secret last will and testament, which conveniently designated him to take over the Temple.

During the 1950s, the remaining Moorish disciples found additional reasons to look elsewhere for their spiritual succor, when the Temple's activities drew the attention of J. Edgar Hoover and the FBI. Suspecting the Moors of collaborating with the Japanese (what with all this "asiatic" stuff), the FBI opened a file on the organization and started trying to infiltrate. By the time the FBI finally dropped its investigation of the Temple years later, its file on Moorish Science had swelled to more than 3,000 pages.

Although Moorish Science continues today, in the form of various splinter groups each claiming the true succession of the Moorish ideal, the Temple was largely obscured by the rise of the Nation of Islam, which had sprung directly from one of the splinters.

Many Moorish followers turned to the Nation of Islam during the 1940s and 1950s, or to traditional Islam, a movement which started to gather steam around the 1970s. One such convert, Clement Rodney Hampton-El, gained notoriety when he later became an al Qaeda-linked terrorist known as Dr. Rashid. Today, there aren't enough Moorish followers to show up in a demographic study. The total number is estimated at somewhere between a couple hundred and tens of thousands (a generous estimate).

Barring a particularly colorful second coming by Noble Drew Ali, Moorish Science is probably destined to become a historical footnote. But thanks to the FBI's extensive documentation of the sect's every move, no matter how trivial, Moorish Science will at least be an extraordinarily well-documented footnote, and that counts for something.

Resources:

3,117 Pages of FBI Documents on the Surveillance of the Moorish Science Temple

 

 

African Origins of the Major "Western Religions":


By Yosef A. A. ben-Jochannan
Published by Black Classic Press (1970)
ISBN 0-933121-29-6
363 pages




--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

It was over 25 years ago that I was first introduced to the works of our beloved "Dr. Ben." I was a grass roots organizer for an anti-poverty program in Montgomery County (Dayton), Ohio. The late 60s and early 70s were turbulent times and many young black "revolutionaries" (including myself) had become disillusioned with religion. We believed as did Karl Marx that "religion was an opiate of the people" designed to anesthetize the minds of the many and line the pockets of the unscrupulous few. We preached that the so-called major western religions were white folk’s religions and offered the historically incorrect but universally accepted blond-haired, blue-eyed representation of Jesus Christ as proof that our enemy had become our deity. We quoted Dr. Carter G. Woodson, who said in his book, The Mis-education of the Negro, that the European destruction of African civilization was done under the guise of "saving souls." And we asked the rhetorical question, must one be dehumanized before one’s soul is saved? In retrospect, we had allowed someone else to define our reality.

Yoruba priestess, Iyanla Vanzant says your soul is saved when you accept that the spirit of God lives in you. She specifically says, "When you can look at yourself, accept who and what you are and love yourself unconditionally, your soul is saved. Your spirit is empowered." Dr. Ben’s African Origins of the Major "Western Religions" was one of the vehicles I used on my journey through Ifa to Olodumare and the empowerment of my spirit.

"For more than five decades, Dr. Yosef ben-Jochannan, a master teacher, researcher, author, lecturer, has led what has now become a mass effort to emphasize African contributions to the world." African Origins of the Major "Western Religions,: first published in 1970, continues to be one of Dr. Ben’s most thought-provoking works. "By highlighting the African influences and roots of these religions (Judaism, Christianity and Islam), Dr. Ben reveals an untold history that many would prefer to forget."

His opening sentence sets the tone for the well-researched and documented work.

Dr. Ben says, "I shall show that Judaism, Christianity, and Islam are as much African as they are Asian in origin, and in no sense what-so-ever European as the title, "Western Religions" suggests;" Dr. Ben’s ultimate goal in this work is to show the definite links between exclusively indigenous traditional African religions with these so-called "Western Religions."

The first chapter is entitled, Shango: A Source of African Religions.
Dr. Ben shows how the "Mysteries of Egypt" were developed from the ancient religious rites of the indigenous Africans who once occupied the lands around the major great lakes of Central Africa and along the head-waters of the Nile River." And how the Mysteries of Egypt through the Egyptian Book of the Coming Forth by Day (Book of the Dead) gave rise to the so-called revealed religions. According to Dr. Ben, Olodumare , God of the Orishas was the brother of the God Ra (Egypt) the representative God of One who gave birth to the Gods of Judaism, Christianity and Islam.

Chapter 2, St. Augustine: African Influence in Christianity (The "Christian Church Fathers"). Dr. Ben says the death of St Augustine in 430 C.E. was the major event in Christendom’s history which started the decline of power and control by the North African Church (the "Mother Church") In this chapter he discusses the influence St. Augustine and other indigenous Africans had on the development of the early Christian Church.

Chapter 3, Moses: African Influence on Judaism. In the introduction, Dr. Ben has warned that, "to say at this time that Moses of the Hebrew (Jewish) religion and peoples, was an indigenous African (Black or Negro), would create a catastrophic consternation among theological racists ……..This would not stop them from saying that "Moses was found floating down the Nile River in a bulrush basket." Dr. Ben says many people conveniently forget that the Nile River’s source begins in Uganda. In this chapter, Dr. Ben also juxtaposes works from the Egyptian Book of the Dead with the Holy Bible and writings attributed to Solomon with those of Egyptian Pharaohs.

Chapter 4, Bilal: African Influence on Islam.
Hadzart Bilal ibn Rahab know simply as Bilal to most Muslims was a "tall and skinny, frizzled-hair indigenous Black man (African) of Ethiopia, East Africa." Bilal, a former slave in Arabia was the Holy Prophet’s most ardent supporter and was responsible for the creation of much of what those of the Islamic faith believe about Heaven and also many of their original prayers and doctrines. Dr. Ben refers to Bilal as another Augustine with respect to his influence on the early development of Islam.

Chapter 5, King, Mohammed, Divine, Matthews and Garvey: Religious New Dimensions. Dr. Ben discusses the influence of Martin Luther King, The Honorable Elijah Muhammad, Father Divine, Rabbi Wentworth Matthews, and Marcus Garvey on the religious scene in America. He says that although most of them did not receive the "Good Negro Seal of Approval," from the allegedly white liberal middle-class community of the United States, their influence cannot be denied.

Conclusion:
Dr. Ben concludes that the term "Western Religions" "is a misnomer and is as racist as it sounds." "Western Religions" like "Greek Philosophy," cannot escape its indigenous African origin says Dr. Ben. His conclusion leads one back to his introduction where he poses what he calls the "first question:"

How much longer are we to remain outside of the religions we originated in our "Mysteries" in Egypt and other High-Cultures along the Nile?

 

Excerpts from Blueprint for Black Power:



"The oppressed and downtrodden, having been traumatized by the abuse of power by their powerful oppressors, often come to perceive power itself as inherently evil, as by nature corrupting and therefore as something to be eschewed, denied and renounced.

The pursuit of power is viewed as unworthy of virtuous persons, and the desire to possess it as sinful. Therefore, many among the powerless and poor feel compelled to find in their powerlessness and poverty the emblematic signs of their Godliness and redemptive salvation.

How convenient a precept for rationalizing and maintaining the power of the haves over the have-nots! As the result of their ideological manipulation by the powerful and their own reactionary misperception of reality, the poor and powerless have been made to perceive the pursuit, possession and application of power in their own behalf as unbecoming to themselves.

This is even more the case when through their naïve acceptance of the self-serving deceptive propaganda perpetrated by the powers-that-be, their own reactionary self-negation, and their nursing of their internalized inferiority complexes, the poor huddled masses perceive the possession and exercise of power as the inherent and exclusive prerogative of the ruling classes or races."

"To a significant degree Afrikan Americans accept and obey predominant White American power and its authorities (at least from social-psychological standpoint) because they agree with the rules of their establishment and expression as defined by White Americans; share with White Americans the moral, legal, and other values and perspectives which justify them; and to some extent (limited and of recent origin) because they, i.e., Blacks, have been permitted by White Americans to participate in political and social processes by which White power is given legitimacy.

To a limited degree, Afrikan Americans have been permitted access to certain positions of competent and legitimate authority. These factors contribute mightily to their acceptance of White American power (domination) and the White American monopoly of positions of authority as legitimate.

These forms of giving consent to the social power status quo on the part of Blacks help to obscure as well as deny the fact that they are in fact a dominated and severely exploited group (regardless of class); and helps to obscure the fact that their uncritical acceptance of the 'rules,' moral beliefs, perspectives, and their customary-traditional participation in the 'American (White) political-economic process and system is tantamount to the legitimating of their own oppression and to the consensual ensurance of their own powerlessness.

Rules, beliefs and consent are manufactured by those in power to justify, legitimate and serve their interests. In its origins White American power was not legitimated (i.e., voluntarily or contractually consented to, morally justified or politically-socially ratified) by Afrikan Americans who at the time of its origination were held in captivity (slavery) and to this point in time have been largely excluded from significantly participating in American legitimating processes.

From the historical point of view of Native and Afrikan Americans, White power, in whatever form, is illegitimate. This is because such power rests essentially on the near physical and genocidal decimation of Native Americans, the theft of their properties, on the exploitation or forced labor (enslavement) of Afrikans, and on the systematic exclusion by Whites of both Black and Native Americans from the influential exercise of practically all forms of 'legitimate' power and authority in the United States.

The rules and beliefs which provide the means for legitimating White power were in fact pre-established, preordained and imposed on Blacks against their will by Whites from the beginning. The illegitimacy of White American power is founded on the illegitimacy of its original sins--genocide, theft of property, and enslavement."

"For social power to be exercised effectively the power holder must possess or control some important or valued material and/or social resource(s) which is the basis of his power. By strategically rewarding or depriving others of these resources, he may use them to influence behavior in ways compatible with his interests.

Resources when used for such ends is referred to as power bases or resources.

Power bases or resources may include physical safety, health and well-being, wealth and material possessions; jobs and means to a livelihood; knowledge and social skills; social recognition, status and prestige; love, affection, social acceptability; a satisfactory self-image and self-respect…

We have no intentions to review the quite sizable number of possible power bases here. We shall constrain ourselves to brief, but pertinent, discussions of those power resources which are of important relevance to Afrikan Americans and the power relations between them and European Americans. These power resources include property, organization, race consciousness and ideology.


We do not include state politics in our discussion at this juncture because in the context of contemporary Afrikan American social, political and economic culture and the more basic issues it must resolve, state politics is of secondary importance to the Black community. Black politics and activism without the Black ownership of and control over primary forms and bases of power such as property, wealth, organization, etc., is the recipe for Black political and non-political powerlessness.

The rather obtuse pursuit of political office and the ballot box as primary sources of power by the Black community and its politicians without its concomitant ownership of and control over important resources, has actually hindered the development of real Black power in America. More ominously, there appears to be a paradoxical and positive correlation between the number of Blacks elected and appointed to high office and retrogressions in the civil and human rights extended to Black Americans during the past twenty years.

Increases in homelessness, poverty, unemployment, criminality and violence in the Black community; disorganization of the traditional Black family, inadequacies in education, increases in health problems of all types, and a host of other social and political ills have all attended increases in the number of Black elected and appointed officials. That is, the more elected and appointed Black politicians, the more social-economic problems the Black community has suffered.

While we are not implying a causal relationship between the increase of the number of Black appointed and elected officials and the increased misery indices of the Black community, we are implying or asserting that their increase obscures those things which are responsible for and do little to ameliorate or uproot the increasing prevalence of social and economic problems in the Black community.

The community's concern with the election and appointment of Black political figures helps it to maintain false hopes that their attainment of office will significantly resolve its problems. The activities of Black politicians, given the current inadequacy of social organization and economic resources, harmfully distract the Black community's attention from recognizing and eradicating the true causes of its problems and the remediation of its powerlessness."

"The responsibility of the Afrikan American community [is to ensure] Afrika's economic development. The ignoring of Afrika by the Western nations provide windows of opportunity open to native Afrikans to drastically reduce the massive outflow or flight of capital, which has been estimated to exceed 80 percent of the Gross Domestic Product, and to reinvest it in their own countries.

Afrikan peoples and nations across the Diaspora must apprise themselves of a full, ongoing knowledge of the social, economic and cultural history of Afrikan nations as well as their contemporary status and reorganize their sociocultural and economic structures so as to initiate and fuel continental Afrika's growth and development.

The Afrikan American community, especially, should vastly overhaul and reconstruct its educational orientation toward a knowledge of the Motherland. It must realize that its own economic salvation is coterminous with or tied to that of Afrika's. It must invest money and human resources in Afrika's development and perceive its economic prosperity as its special responsibility and mission…

The Afrikan American community must become vigilantly and jealously interested in U.S. and European policies toward Afrika and seek to influence those policies in both its own and Afrika's favor."




























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